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Posts Tagged ‘Craig Young’

Yorba Linda Recall: Young and Lindsey Receives IE Rescue

Posted by Allen Wilson on May 23, 2014

The Southern California Coalition of Business and Taxpayers (SCCBT) has recently established an Independent Expenditure (IE) on March 28, 2014 with a FPPC number 1365006.

The SCCBT has already raised over $100K for the purpose of supporting and/or opposing candidates in state and local offices.

On May 16, 2014, the SCCBT has spent resources at a total cost of over $13,000 on literature on behalf of Yorba Linda Mayor Craig Young and Yorba Linda Councilman Tom Lindsey.

Below is the IE expenses of $8,204.66 for Craig Young:

image

Below is the IE expenses of $5,072.94 for Tom Lindsey:

image

It is possible that this is just the beginning.  All IE late contributions are require to report some activity with the Secretary of State and local clerk and in this case would be the Yorba Linda City Clerk.

Posted in Campaign Finance, Yorba Linda | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Yorba Linda Recall: Signatures Count and Verification Begins

Posted by Allen Wilson on May 15, 2014

Recall

The Yorba Linda City Clerk has determined that the group seeking to recall Councilmembers Craig Young and Tom Lindsey has exceeded the 8,100 signatures requirement.   Now, the Orange County Registrar of Voters will proceed to verify the signatures to determine the validity of those signatures whether or not it triggers a recall of the duo Councilmembers.

The YLRRR (Yorba Linda Residents for Responsible Representation) has announced they have collected 9,670 signatures to recall Craig Young and 9,495 signatures to recall Tom Lindsey.

 

 

Posted in Yorba Linda | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

AD-55: Craig Young Drops Out

Posted by Newsletter Reprint on February 18, 2014

This afternoon, Yorba Linda Mayor Craig Young publicly announced that he was dropping out of the 55th Assembly District race. With Young’s exit, there remain three candidates left in the AD-55 race: Walnut Valley Unified School District Trustee Phillip Chen, Diamond Bar City Councilwoman Ling-Ling Chang, and Diamond Bar Mayor Pro Tem Steve Tye. Here’s the announcement Young sent out:

Today, I am stepping away from my State Assembly race to focus 100% of available energy and attention on defeating the special interests working against Yorba Linda taxpayers.

When I decided to run to succeed Curt Hagman in the State Assembly, it was to pick up where he will leave off fighting against the out-of-control state mandates and reckless spending in Sacramento.  My desire is to stop policies like the early release of hardened criminals into our communities, to protect our property rights, and to stop the practice of raising taxes rather than making tough decisions.

However, narrow special interests right here in Yorba Linda are working aggressively to undue the progress we’ve made moving our city forward – and they’re doing this at great risk and expense to our taxpayers.

Two years ago, Mayor Pro Tem Gene Hernandez, Tom Lindsey and I campaigned against a council that refused to put our community ahead of their own agendas. Fortunately, working together, we have made tremendous progress in getting the city back on track:

  1. Town Center is now taking significant steps forward,
  2. Crippling debt has been paid off saving Yorba Linda millions in non-budgeted deficit spending,
  3. And for the first time your City Council is actively addressing the substantial unfunded pension, health and capital liabilities that will handicap our future.

This is great progress and I am very proud to have been a part of the accomplishments.  In fact I have never been more optimistic and energized about our future as long as we stay this course.

While I feel there is much good I can do in Sacramento, I refuse to pursue that good at the expense of our progress here in Yorba Linda. My first commitment is to our community as an elected leader.

Therefore, I am stepping away from the State Assembly race and focusing my entire attention on assuring Yorba Linda defeats the abusive recall and re-elects Tom Lindsey and another fiscally conservative councilmember this November.

The State still needs fixing. Government is too big, too controlling, and way too expensive. However, there are now three candidates vying for the State seat and I have become convinced that within this full slate there is a candidate who will represent our conservative interests.
But rest assured, while I am focused on making certain Yorba Linda is on sound footing, I will not lose sight of holding accountable those in Sacramento who are charged to represent us.

I have been humbled by the support of so many people in Yorba Linda and throughout the area.  There will be other opportunities for me to serve in different capacities, but at this time, my responsibilities as mayor takes top priority.

Thank you for your support and thank you to all who continue to stand with me in protecting the rights, pocket books and quality of life of Yorba Linda residents.

Posted in 55th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

AD-55: Chang Has One of OC’s Largest Warchests, but Chen’s is Twice as Large

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 13, 2014

Republican AD-55 Candidates: Phillip Chen, Ling-Ling Chang, Craig Young, and Steve Tye

Republican AD-55 Candidates: Phillip Chen, Ling-Ling Chang, Craig Young, and Steve Tye

Campaign finance numbers indicate that voters in AD-55 can look forward to an obscene amount of mail in the run-up to the June Primary.  Ling-Ling Chang wields one of the largest warchests of any candidate who will appear on the 2014 ballot anywhere in Orange County.  However, Phillip Chen has more than double her cash on hand.

Other than Yorba Linda Mayor Craig Young, every declared candidate in the race is a resident of Los Angeles County.  This tri-county Assembly district contains portions of Orange County (Brea, La Habra, Placentia, and Yorba Linda), LA County (Diamond Bar, Industry, Rowland Heights, Walnut, and West Covina), and San Bernardino County (Chino Hills).  Orange County is home to the plurality of all AD-55 voters and the majority of AD-55’s Republican voters.

Here at OC Political, we’ve railed repeatedly against $100,000 paper tiger loans.  (These loans of $100,000 or less are frequently used by candidates to artificially inflate their warchest numbers.  While OC Political has many posts about those, this one is probably the seminal post on the issue.)   Both Chang and Chen gave themselves these $100,000 paper tiger loans, but they seem even more ridiculous in AD-55 than in other districts, considering the significant warchests wielded by both Chen and Chang.  (The OC Political post on AD-55 campaign finances from the last reporting period was entitled, “AD-55: Land of the $100,000-Loan Paper Tigers,” and was even picked up by the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.)

I will give Chen credit for actually spending his own money, as I did for AD-73 Candidate Paul Glaab who put in $22,000 of his own money.  Chen put his money where his mouth is by donating $50,000 to his own campaign beyond the $100,000 loan he made to his campaign.  State campaign finance regulations put that $50,000 forever out of Chen’s reach; it is nonrefundable, and he must spend it on the campaign.  Chen was well aware of this regulation and properly reported the $50,000 as a contribution, not a loan.

Chang, a Diamond Bar Councilwoman, had a strong showing in the first half of 2013, raising $195,348.  Her expenditures were primarily for slate mailers and fundraising expenses.  While her showing for the second half of 2013 was not as strong, her $40,217 raised outpaced every candidate in AD-74, AD-73, and AD-55, except for one. Unfortunately for her, the one is her opponent, Chen.  Chang spent $31,503 in 2013 and has an additional $4,192 in unpaid bills.  Once her $100,000 loan is accounted for, Chang has $172,267 cash on hand.

Chen, a Walnut Valley Unified School District Trustee and a staffer for LA County Supervisor Mike Antonovich, entered the race late in the first half of 2013, so he raised nothing by June 30, except for his massive transfer of $219,000 on June 27 from his school board account (Outside of LAUSD, are there any school board members in Southern California who have ever had such a huge warchest?).  However, that entire sum was raised into his school board account from February 7-June 15, so presumably, his donors were expecting him to use that money to run for the Assembly, and indeed many of them gave him $4,100 (the maximum that can be legally donated for an Assembly race; school boards have no contribution limits).  In the second half of 2013, Chen raised $141,242, transferred in another $3,000 from his school board account, and personally donated $50,000.  He spent $53,833 in 2013 and has an additional $1,635 in unpaid bills.  Chen’s expenditures ran the gamut, including campaign literature, slate mailers, consulting fees, and a poll.  Once his $100,000 loan is accounted for, Chen has $357,974 cash on hand.

Young, the sole Orange County resident in the race, entered the race during the second half of 2013, during which time, he raised $30,758 and spent $20,928, leaving him with $9,830 cash on hand.  Young’s expenditures were nearly all consulting fees.  He is the only candidate in the race who made no transfers, has no loans, and has no unpaid bills.

Steve Tye, Chang’s Council colleague, entered the race after the last reporting period concluded, so no report exists for him.

Chang, Young, and Tye no longer have to fear any more transfers from Chen’s school board account, which only has $1,696 left in it.  Chang actually substantially outraised Chen for this Assembly race (her $235,565 for 2013 versus his $141,242), but she’s massively behind in cash-on-hand thanks to that absolutely massive school board account that Chen moved into his Assembly account.

For visual learners:

Candidate 1/1/13-6/30/13
Contributions
7/1/13-12/31/13
Contributions
Transfers Candidate
Contributions
Candidate
Loans
Unpaid
Bills
Expenditures Cash on Hand
(COH)
COH Minus
Unpaid Bills
COH Minus
Unpaid Bills
& Loans
Chen $0 $141,242 $222,200 $50,000 $100,000 $1,635 $53,833 $459,609 $457,974 $357,974
Chang $195,348 $40,217 $2,600 $0 $100,000 $4,192 $31,053 $276,459 $272,267 $172,267
Young N/A $30,758 $0 $0 $0 $0 $20,928 $9,830 $9,830 $9,830
Tye N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Notes: Figures may be off by one dollar due to rounding.

 

To demonstrate the shear size of the AD-55 warchests, I’ll compare them with the ones in AD-73 and AD-74. Chang raised more money in the first half of 2013 than all of the AD-74 candidates combined in the entirety of their campaigns, and she has more cash-on-hand than all the AD-74 candidates combined (even if you include all the AD-74 candidate loans and exclude Chang’s loan).  Chang also has more cash-on-hand than all the AD-73 candidates combined.  Keeping all of that in mind, now remember that Chen has twice as much cash-on-hand that Chang does.  Clearly, AD-55 will be the glitziest Assembly race on the June 2014 ballot in Orange County.

Posted in 55th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Can’t We All Just Get Along: Politics as usual in Yorba Linda

Posted by Brenda McCune on January 23, 2014

I hate to quote Rodney King, but it just fits. There are too many important races coming up this year and too much at stake to not take an early look at alignments, tactics and issues.

In my little town of Yorba Linda, we have the usual onslaught, yes, already, of Republican on Republican verbal violence. It makes no sense, and literally everyone loses in such a battle. There is a movement afoot, to recall two council members. There is no allegation of abuse of power, of violation of law, of conflict of interest, sexual or moral misconduct, the gist of this movement is that they did not keep their campaign promises.

Really. Shocking. Whether they did or didn’t, just shocking that such an allegation would arise.

One of the Council Members targeted in the recall is up for re-election in NOVEMBER. Mark my words, the candidates and their supporters who are behind this, will run in November beating the drum of how they are the “real” fiscal conservatives. Please consider the cost of this recall effort. Even if it goes nowhere, the city staff still must count and review the signatures obtained and the application paperwork.

Recalls should be reserved for serious and egregious conduct, not just because you don’t like who’s in office. That is precisely the situation with this one, as well as the last unsuccessful recall effort (that would be the ‘other’ side who tried that last cycle) The current recall literature is couched in terms of high versus low density zoning. This is a perennial issue in Yorba Linda which has existed as a very contentious one for more than two decades.

News Flash: Nobody wants HIGH Density zoning. The proverbial, NOT IN MY BACKYARD attitude prevails. The best spin doctors on this issue, many years ago, used the term, “low income” housing. Which is confusing and lead people to have images of a Harlem style development, also formally known as Section 8 housing. Higher density does not mean Section 8 housing.

The one true statement that appears in the literature from both sides is that it is gonna happen. The part that is not true, is each side attributing ‘fault’ to the other. The real villain in the scenario is Sacramento. The state mandates that the city have some land available for building homes that are “affordable”. Last time I checked that was the theory of housing for a family of four with an income of about $40,000 per year. We can’t be sure where the Sacramento brain trust came up with such an imaginary family, but I can assure you, regardless of what they build in Yorba Linda, it is not likely to be affordable for that family under any circumstances. The theory though, requires that the “density”, or the number of homes per acre, must be raised to more homes per acre than Yorba Linda has had historically, in order to satisfy this State mandate.

If Yorba Linda does not in some way comply, there will be litigation. State of California vs. Yorba Linda, is not a case that I want to see filed anywhere. It is likely to be very costly and the bottom line is, Yorba Linda loses. I suppose there is a tangential argument (Translation of tangential: Ridiculous and unsuccessful) that we Yorba Lindans have a proprietary and constitutional right to all have low density zoning, anywhere and everywhere in our town because that is what we bargained for when we moved in here and paid all this money for our lovely homes.

This has been tried before. The U.S. Supreme Court block busting cases, Kraemer, and it’s progeny, basically said what we all already know, our constitutional rights all have limits. All of them, even the ones related to ownership of property. Keeping people out on the basis on economic impediments is likely to go as well as keeping people out on the basis of race. Likely result of the litigation is the California law will be upheld and Yorba Linda will foot the bill for the whole fiasco. The city’s law firm, and the numerous law clerks who would work on the case would be imminently pleased to have learned so much about constitutional and municipal zoning laws, at our expense. So, if you think High Density will have a negative impact on your property taxes, just wait till City Hall gets our lawyers involved with litigation with the State and see what happens to our city’s otherwise bright financial future.

The city’s coffers are not the piggy bank of politicians to take up and take on ridiculous issues for the purposes of keeping their names in the paper. Look around residents, it has become the status quo. Everytime you see a Yorba Linda politician in the paper or on the news it is usually NOT about an issue that has a close nexus to something that is in the best interests of the city.

Everybody in the race this year is likely to be Republican. Everybody in the race this year is going to be waving the flag of being a “Fiscal Conservative”. PLEASE PAY ATTENTION to the spin, here because in general they are all SAYING THE SAME THING.

We don’t want HIGH Density, but we DON’T want litigation either. We must walk this fine line between getting what we want and placating big brother. Anyone who is telling you something different, anyone who is blaming the other guys and saying it is THEIR fault and THEY broke promises, and I can give you the proverbial “chicken in every pot” (or a half acre for everyone in the case of Yorba Linda), well they are just not being truthful with you.

The bloodsport of politics in the city of Yorba Linda is likely to be as ugly as any year prior. Be informed, tell the people standing in front of your grocery store that you are informed and that there presence is decreasing your property value as much as anything.

The only thing to be gained by any of this posturing is to ruin some candidates and get attention for other candidates. We as citizens encourage this by tolerating and ignoring it. These ugly and contentious races have kept away good candidates and very much work to minimize public participation of those who fear retribution. I don’t know about you, but my intent is to be aware and not support the negativity and histrionic shenanigans of these people. We should all make that known to the candidates as they announce their candidacy in the coming weeks.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »

Yorba Linda Councilmembers Young and Lindsey served Recall Notice

Posted by Allen Wilson on January 5, 2014

Recall

As many were prepping for the holidays last month Yorba Linda Councilmembers Tom Lindsey and Craig Young were served with recall notice at the December 17th city council meeting.

The signature requirement for the recall of Yorba Linda councilmembers is 20% if the registration is less than 50,000, but at least 10,000.  The last report of registration by the county election officials to the Secretary of State was on February 10, 2013, which shows that there were 40,501 registered voters in Yorba Linda.

The recall proponents will need to gather 8,100 signatures to mount a recall campaign against the two councilmembers within 120 days.

Councilmember Lindsey was elected in 2010 and stands for re-election this November.

Councilmember Young was elected in 2012 and stands for re-election in 2016 who is also running this June 2014 for State Assembly in the 55th Assembly District, which will be problematic as recall could hamper his Assembly prospects.

Orange County Register reported late summer of 2012 the recall efforts of Councilman John Anderson failed because the proponents did not get enough signatures.

 

Lindsey

NOTICE OF INTENT TO CIRCULATE RECALL PETITION
(Served to Tom Lindsey on December 17)

 

TO THE HONORABLE Thomas H. Lindsey: Pursuant to Section 11020, California Elections Code, the undersigned registered qualified voters of Yorba Linda, in the State of California, hereby give notice that we are the proponents of a recall petition and that we intend to seek your recall and removal from the office of City Councilmember, in Yorba Linda, California and to demand election of a successor in that office.

 

The grounds for recall of Councilmember Thomas H. Lindsey are:

 

Broke his campaign pledge of low-density development.

 

a. Voted against an urgency ordinance, which would have placed a moratorium on high density development and that would help further a ballot measure to eliminate or reduce high-density housing sites that include 4-story buildings with heights up to 50 feet.

 

b. Refused to listen to concerned residents and deal harshly with the County regarding development of over 500 homes in fire sensitive land near the northeast corridor of the City.

 

c. Lindsey’s vote to kill the high-density moratorium is an abandonment of his signed statement in his 2010 Contract with Yorba Linda, which pledged to voters that all infill development projects would be consistent with their existing and surrounding neighborhoods.

 

Is fiscally irresponsible and unethical.

 

a. Put the City at risk for a $19 million breach of contract lawsuit with the County and the Sheriffs Department in an ill-fated attempt to renegotiate Yorba Linda’s police services contract with the Brea Police Department, after the police contract was signed and approved by both the City and County.

 

b. Participated in a public smear campaign of three fellow councilmembers, voting to publicly disclose confidential closed-session information used during the November 2012 election.

Councilman Lindsey responded to the recall:

PLEASE, DO NOT SIGN THE RECALL

 

It will cost Yorba Linda taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars in filing fees alone. This recall is a misguided attempt by a narrow special interest to bully council into adopting extreme policies that will hurt our economy, kill jobs and also cost residents hundreds of thousands in attorneys’ fees.

 

A city-wide moratorium on new construction in response to this special interest group’s opposition is a disproportionate reaction we cannot afford.  It’s the same kind of reactionary policy-making that takes place in Sacramento which is driving so many businesses from California.

 

This recall is a reckless erosion of council’s independence from bullying special interests.  It’s an intimidation tactic that sets a precedent on future councils’ willingness to do what is right for ALL residents, not bend to the will of special interests.

 

I’m a low-density housing advocate who carefully negotiates as opposed to recklessly abandons the fiduciary responsibility owed taxpayers and I’m fully supportive of the diligent efforts by our Sheriffs.  I’ve worked hard to help get our finances in order, already saving us millions in interest, and am disappointed this group would waste tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars on this unnecessary effort.

Yorba Linda Mayor Craig Young

NOTICE OF INTENT TO CIRCULATE RECALL PETITION
(Served to Craig Young on December 17)

TO THE HONORABLE Craig Young: Pursuant to Section 11020, California Elections Code, the undersigned registered qualified voters of Yorba Linda, in the State of California, hereby give notice that we are the proponents of a recall petition and that we intend to seek your recall and removal from the office of City Councilmember in Yorba Linda, California and to demand election of a successor in that office.

The grounds for recall of Councilmember Craig Young are:

Broke his campaign pledge of low-density development.

a. Voted against an urgency ordinance, which would have placed a moratorium on high-density development and that would help further a ballot measure to eliminate or reduce high-density housing sites that include 4-story buildings with heights up to 50 feet.

b. Refused to listen to concerned residents and deal harshly with the County regarding development of over 500 homes in fire sensitive land near the northeast corridor of the City.

Is fiscally irresponsible and unethical.

a. Put the City at risk for a $19 million breach of contract lawsuit with the County and the Sheriffs Department in an ill-fated attempt to renegotiate Yorba Linda’s police services contract with the Brea Police Department, after the police contract was signed and approved by both the City and County.

Betrayed the trust of Yorba Linda voters and his 4-year commitment to the community to serve on the city council.

a. Declared his candidacy for State Assembly in August 2013 within just 8 months of being sworn in for his first term as a city councilman. Ironically, his November 2012 campaign statement specifically stated he had no hidden agenda and no axe to grind.
Mayor Young responded to the recall:
PLEASE, DO NOT SIGN THE RECALL

 

It will cost Yorba Linda taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars in filing fees alone. This recall is a misguided attempt by a narrow special interest to bully council into adopting extreme policies that will hurt our economy, kill jobs and also cost residents hundreds of thousands in attorneys’ fees.

A city-wide moratorium on new construction in response to this special interest group’s opposition is a disproportionate reaction we cannot afford. It’s the same kind of reactionary policy-making that takes place in Sacramento which is driving so many businesses from California.

This recall is a reckless erosion of council’s independence from bullying special interests. It’s an intimidation tactic that sets a precedent on future councils’ willingness to do what is right for ALL residents, not bend to the will of special interests.

I’m a low-density housing advocate who carefully negotiates as opposed to recklessly abandons the fiduciary responsibility owed taxpayers and I’m fully supportive of the diligent efforts by our Sheriffs. I’ve worked hard to help get our finances in order, already saving us millions in interest, and am disappointed this group would waste tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars on this unnecessary effort.
The Yorba Linda Residents for Responsible Representation (YLRRR) responds to Lindsey and Young:
We do know how much it costs. Did you know that ALL Yorba Linda taxpayers are paying over $100,000 a month to subsidize the underpayment of landscape maintenance fees by certain districts in the Landscape Maintenance Assessment District? These districts are supposed to be self sufficient and pay their own way. Craig Young and Tom Lindsey support these subsidies.

Did you know that high-density housing has increased 70% in Yorba Linda and that it is decreasing ALL of our property values in the millions? There is absolutely no way a 4-story, 125 unit, multi-family apartment complex is going to increase property values adjacent to single-family homes. When presented with an opportunity to place a moratorium on high-density development so voters could correct high-density zoning issues, both Young and Lindsey cow towed to developers and voted against the moratorium.

Did you know that Young and Lindsey put the City at risk for a $19 million lawsuit with the County of Orange because they both made an ill-fated attempt to renegotiate our police contract with the City of Brea? The City had a signed contract with the Sheriff’s Department and both Young and Lindsey were willing to violate the terms of that contract and pay more for police services from Brea.

Lindsey and Young are costing our city millions. A recall is a drop in the bucket.

Posted in 55th Assembly District, State Assembly, Yorba Linda | Tagged: , , , , , | 6 Comments »

AD-55 & AD-74: Assembly Candidates Ascend to Mayorships

Posted by Chris Nguyen on December 4, 2013

Yorba Linda Mayor Craig Young

Yorba Linda Mayor
Craig Young

Huntington Beach Mayor Matt Harper

Huntington Beach Mayor
Matt Harper

In a handy tool for their State Assembly campaigns, AD-55 Candidate Craig Young became Mayor of Yorba Linda last night and AD-74 Candidate Matt Harper became Mayor of Huntington Beach on Monday night.

Being mayor during the same year as an Assembly candidacy lends itself to a few helpful advantages:

  • “Mayor” is stronger than “Councilman” as a ballot designation.  Many voters do not realize that most California mayors are effectively the chair of the city council; these voters instead think of executive mayors, like the types in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, New York City, and Chicago.  (For the political scientists out there, many California voters believe they live in a city with a “strong mayor-council” system when in reality, most California cities have “council-manager” systems.)
  • Mayors tend to get more press coverage than councilmembers, as reporters are more likely to quote a mayor than a councilmember.
  • Mayors get more of the spotlight at community events.  Rather than asking five or seven councilmembers to speak at an event, most organizers will simply ask the mayor to speak.  After all, people attending a community event would generally prefer to hear a speech from one politician rather than speeches from about a half-dozen politicians.

At this point in the AD-55 race, Young’s opponents for the Republican nomination are Diamond Bar Councilwoman Ling-Ling Chang and Walnut Valley Unified School Board Member Phillip Chen.  Chang will not be mayor during her Assembly bid, as Carol Herrera became Mayor of Diamond Bar last night.  AD-55 Incumbent Curt Hagman is termed out.  You can find previous OC Political posts on the AD-55 race here.

Mayor Harper is the only elected official to have thrown his hat in the AD-74 ring as of this morning.  His two opponents for the Republican nomination are 2010 Laguna Beach City Council Candidate Emanuel Patrascu, whose day job is as District Director for State Assemblyman Travis Allen, and 2012 Santa Ana City Council Candidate Karina Onofre, whose day job is split between working for H&R Block and as a Field Representative for State Senator Bob Huff.  AD-74 Incumbent Allan Mansoor is running for Orange County Supervisor.  You can find previous OC Political posts on the AD-74 race here.

Posted in 55th Assembly District, 74th Assembly District, Huntington Beach, Yorba Linda | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

OC Clerk-Recorder Hugh Nguyen Fundraiser, Thursday, October 3

Posted by Newsletter Reprint on September 24, 2013

This came over the wire from the Hugh Nguyen for Clerk-Recorder 2014 campaign…

Hugh Nguyen

Posted in Orange County | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Craig Young: Choosing Battles: Local Control, State Mandate and Knowing the Difference

Posted by Newsletter Reprint on August 23, 2013

Craig YoungThis op-ed came across the wire from Yorba Linda Mayor Pro Tem Craig Young…

Choosing Battles: Local Control, State Mandate and Knowing the Difference

The wise leader considers both armies before going into battle.  It is said my NO vote against an Entitlement Program that gives free lunches as well as tens of thousands of dollars to a real estate investor should require that I also vote NO on any funding for the roads we all drive on. Really?? It is also said I should have voted NO on the Housing Element that was approved the night I lost the vote against returning Block Grants.  I am painted as being inconsistent.  The appropriate retort: apples and oranges.

While ideologically a NO vote on the Housing Element sends a message to Sacramento about objection to entitlements, unfortunately that vote bears consequences that would be overwhelmingly adverse to our city. The NO vote on Block Grants has consequences too (e.g. loss of community embraced programs and over $42,000 in general funding). However, we can afford the adverse consequences on Block Grants, we cannot afford those on the Housing Element.

Long before my time, we were painted into a corner with the Housing Element.  Thomas Jefferson said, “A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have.”

Disapproving the Housing Element could give the State the ability to freeze development in our city; we would no longer be able to issue building permits of any type. More importantly, a non-certified Housing Element could subject our city to scrutiny and significant legal claims from housing advocacy groups, which could be very costly to our general fund. And worse, the NO vote potentially even bestows Sacramento with control to step in and approve, without our input, construction of housing they seek.

A NO vote on Block Grants keeps us from receiving something we can choose to selectively fund on our own. A NO vote on the Housing Element has the adverse effect of taking sole local control away and giving it to the State. A glance at the balance sheet indicates to me that the negatives tremendously outweigh the positives.

Would I advocate for the State returning control to the local cities? Absolutely!  However, in so advocating, we must carefully craft decisions balancing ideology with pragmatism.

Craig Young is an attorney, active member in the Lincoln Club, and serves as Mayor Pro Tem in Yorba Linda, CA.

 

Posted in California, Yorba Linda | Tagged: , , , | 4 Comments »

Let’s breathe some CA AIR back into America.

Posted by Newsletter Reprint on July 18, 2013

This piece just came across the wire from Yorba Linda Councilmember Craig Young:

Let’s breathe some CA AIR back into America.
By: Craig Young

 Last night council voted to again approve Yorba Linda’s share of $3.1 Billion in entitlement funding. Though not the lone voice, I ultimately was the only vote in opposition.

 I think it is MY responsibility to support the poor, not the cities’ nor the states’ and certainly not the federal government’s.  My vote last evening against the HUD Community Development Block Grant Program was cast not because I naively thought there was a chance of reversing this large entitlement program. Nor was the vote cast without careful consideration of the adverse consequences to us as a city both financially and programmatically.

I voted the way I did because
it was the right thing to do…and change begins with me.

Do I support the very-poor (the principal purpose of the program)? Most definitely. I have taken my family on extended mission trips to Africa, Indonesia and Mexico. To him who has been given much, much is expected.  The needs locally are just as compelling.

But herein lies the key; I took my family. I didn’t leave it to big government to do my bidding; to do so would have shunned my responsibility and cost me the joy in giving.  When government gets involved, expenses go up and accountability goes down. Out of the $3.1 Billion for this national program, local agencies are allowed to lop off 20% for administration expenses, that’s a whopping $620 Million which funds the local administrative machine. Through my research, I haven’t found how much HUD keeps for its monitoring but would anyone be surprised if HUD retains at least as much as they allow the local agencies? This would be another 20%.

2 Problems: Expense & Accountability.  With a 20% assumption, it takes approximately $3.9 Billion of our tax dollars to create a $3.1 Billion entitlement program to fund $2.5 Billion of aid.  That’s a dollar of administration for every $1.78 of purported aid. And does the aid really support those with the most need? Or do some agencies artificially create need simply to keep their share of administration fees?

My city is blessed with honest administrators and caring citizens, more so perhaps than most places. We call ourselves after all the Land of Gracious Living.  When “free” money is being doled out however, one’s constitution must be fortified to return the money, particularly when refusing only means someone perhaps less deserving will take the cash. Entitlement Communities like Yorba Linda (that’s actually what we’re called) must qualify for and spend the allotted share every year. I’m told staff has to work hard to find people to give this money to.  Recently our distributions fell in to three categories.  Last year part of the money went to fund home improvements, another part went to administer meals for 500 seniors (the grant didn’t fund the food, just the wait staff and incidental support) and the final block funded a low income owner of an investment retail building.

Were all three of these block funds given to classes of people who earn less than the average person in Orange County? Certainly. Yet most of them drive nice cars, many own homes, and at least one owns investment real estate. So my challenge is, as supported by my vote last night, should we really rob from Peter to pay Paul, after of course diluting the tax by $1.4 Billion in administration fees? My vote is, NO.

 

Craig Young is a local attorney, active member in the Lincoln Club, and serves as Mayor Pro Tem in Yorba Linda, CA.

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