OC Political

A right-of-center blog covering local, statewide, and national politics

Posts Tagged ‘Orange County Sheriff Union’

Thug Politics in Yorba Linda: Part II

Posted by Brenda Higgins on October 22, 2012

The ongoing brow beating in the 2012 campaign, has given rise to a few themes.  The issues facing the city are not that dramatic or sexy, so the personal attacks are certainy present. Noteably, in the mailers, and as raised by Nancy Rikel in a few of the candidate “forums” is the fact that Gene Hernandez is retired from a career in local law enforcement, and as such, is drawing the pension that accompanied that career.

I’ve tried to find out all I can about the candidates, and I can find no evidence that Nancy Rikel ever strapped on a gun, and wore a badge for the purpose of public safety, so her comment that “I guess he earned it” are immensely offensive and uncalled for. You can see the Eastlake Homeowners Association Forum, as well as segments of the Chamber of Commerce Candidate Forum on YouTube. Search YORBA LINDA CANDIDATE FORUM. Bill Laing, a member of the Chamber, has edited the Chamber Forum, into segments by question, which is immensely helpful.

Gene Hernandez has a website that provides quite a lot of information about him, including his complete resume. An incredibly impressive resume, that sets forth his three decades in law enforcement, his education and multiple advanced degrees, as well as a lifetime of service, in addition to his regular job,  to children and others. Gene modestly included in his resume that he has undertaken “humanitarian travel”, without including the details of his trips to Mexico to build houses, and to India to deliver vaccines.

Interestingly, Ms. Rikel’s website includes precious little information about her professional life. From what I can tell, all of her greatest accomplishments in life occurred in the past four years. In her insistence of making an issue of Mr. Hernandez’ pension, she fails to note that she supplements her City Council stipend of $500 per month, with additional stipends from the other boards that she sits on, incidental to her City Council position, such as the water board and the Fire Authority. She emphasizes at the Forums and on her site that she is committed to public safety, and enforcing municipal codes that prohibit owners from having delapidated buildings. She fails to mention that the only owner that has delapidate building is the City of Yorba Linda. These buildings have been owned by the city since her buddies rode into office in 2006, and they have succeeded in doing exactly nothing with them. As to her professional life, it is very mysterious. It is my understanding that she works in her family’s business, but whether than makes her an “executive” is questionable. She makes much ado over her support of Measure Y, which was the Ethics measure for the city, prohibiting any candidate from taking any support of over $250 from anyone who may have a contract with the City.

Well, the $10 million contract she just awarded to the Orange County Sheriff was not a contract with the UNION, right? It is my further understanding that Ms. Rikel is claiming not to have “authorized” the Sheriff Union mailers, two I mentioned on the other “Thug” blog, and I now understand there was apprently one more. What an extraordinary stroke of luck for Ms. Rikel, Mr. Schwing and Mr. Peterson. How nice of the Union to step up and help them in that way. I will be interested to see the disclosures from the Union on those mailers, my guess is that about a $30k gift. That is quite a lot of appreciation and affection. I am also very fond of the way in which all references that Ms. Rikel makes on her website to the Sheriff contract are PAST tense. As if the anticipated savings and increased patrols have already occurred. I can’t wait to see.

Mr. Schwing has a website in which he vaguely tip toes around his experience on the Yorba Linda City Council. The elephant in the room is the term limit that he avoids due to the fact that his first twelve years on the council were prior to the enactment of the term limits. Transparency in government has been the mantra of Mr. Schwing and his cohorts, the other YLRRR councilpersons. Mr. Schwing also makes much of his current position as “Mayor”.   NOTE:  Mark Schwing is not running for MAYOR.  There is no elected Mayor in Yorba Linda, and John Anderson played this same game in 2010.  Mr. Schwing  fails to mention in his assertion of his Mayor-hood, that there has always been a rotation that was followed, in that each council person has an opportunity to be mayor once during his/her term. However, Mr. Schwing has served as Mayor twice during his recent term. That is because he and his cohorts dispensed with tradition and protocall and stepped over, first Jan Horton, and most recently Jim Winder, so that Mark Schwing could proclaim himself Mayor at pertinent times, such as after the 2008 fire, and during this election. Noteably, when they stepped over Jan Horton’s turn to be Mayor, they also stripped her of her board duties and positions.  Yes, those are the same ones mentioned above, that Nancy Rikel now has and gets the extra money for.  Schwing takes precious little in the way of positions on issues on his website, or makes any clear statements of opinions. Certainly that gives him less to have to back out of later.

Craig Young has a website, and a SmartVoter page. His background in corporate boards and management experience, makes him extremely well qualified for the rudimentary city council duties associated with the city council seat. His financial background, as well as his Lincoln Club experience, make him clearly more attractive as a candidate than any other YLRRR puppet.

Kennith Peterson, the new guy running with the incumbents, has tied his campaign to his law office website. Supported by the YLRRR and the Sheriff Union. Why do we want more people to play this game? Why not comply with the spirit of Measure Y, and run your own race, be independent and cut ties to the thugs? Apparently, Mr. Peterson is a Thug-in-waiting, riding the coat tails of the others.

Lou Knappleberger does not have a website or a SmartVoter page. I have only met him once and know very little about him.

Todd Cooper also, does not have a website or a SmartVoter page. I have not met him. What little I saw of his performance, he seemed competent and informed.

With Knappleberger and Cooper making such a lack luster effort, we seem destined to end up with at least one of the Thugs back on the council, which is unfortunate, but not disastrous.

With the sheep’s clothing of fiscal conservativism, the YLRRR candidates may sweep this election once again. However, if any of the voters in Yorba Linda is really interested in seeing what is up in Yorba Linda and if these folks are telling us the truth about all they are doing for us and how much they have “improved” life in Yorba Linda and are saving us money, just take a walk down Main Street. Walk a couple blocks over. Walk down Lakeview between Yorba Linda Blvd. and Lemon. Look around. This is the platform and issue upon which the YLRRR, (Used the be the “R” was for Redevelopment) got their start with.  They’ve now had control of the city for 6 years. Do you see any Redevelopment?

Posted in Uncategorized, Yorba Linda | Tagged: , , , | 6 Comments »

Thug Politics in Yorba Linda is alive and well

Posted by Brenda Higgins on October 20, 2012

As predictable as the return of the Santa Ana winds in November, is the election year hit piece generated by YLRRR. Yorba Linda Residents for Responsible Representation, was originally formed in response to the commencement of development of what has been come to be collectively known as the Yorba Linda Town Center, in about 2006. The name was Yorba Linda Residents for Responsible Redevelopment, it was changed after they managed to kill the plans that were in place and run the developer out of town. Since that time this special interest group has controlled and determined the outcome of each and every city council election.

In spite of their indisputable political strength, they continue their schoolyard bully approach to campaigns, aggressively ramping up rhetoric and playing fast and loose with the facts.

In 2010 it was the piece with a photo of (then incumbent) Jan Horton, with a big red slash across her face.

True to form, they have chosen the same basic format, the same marginal effort at accuracy and the same level of histrionic antics.

Voters in Yorba Linda continue to vote with the recommendations of this group. I don’t understand it, but thug politics still works, at least here.

Posted in Uncategorized, Yorba Linda | Tagged: , | 14 Comments »

Politics and Policing in Yorba Linda; Election 2012

Posted by Brenda Higgins on October 19, 2012

I saved the seven pieces of mail I have received so far related to the Yorba Linda City Council race. Here are the two that I found most disturbing.

These pieces are sent by the “Association of Orange County Sheriff’s Independent Expenditure”.

These pieces make the same claim that the contract with OC Sheriff will save the city $10 million dollars. This is over the course of the five year contracted term and based upon the proposal which was approved several months ago. The claims go on to state that the new contract, at the lower rate will give Yorba Linda a “full service police station” for the first time, give Yorba Linda a Chief of Police, provide greater protection and hire displaced Brea Police officers. The veracity of all of these claims have been widely debated in my earlier blogs here and in several other (mostly sponsored) forums. The soundness of the bid, the assertions of nearly magical outcomes and historic savings are not the issue in this election.

Citizens of Yorba Linda, if you were not certain before, now that you have received your ballots and sample ballots, this issue is not, has not, will not, be put to you the voters for a vote. Your council, Schwing, Rikel and Anderson, voting en masse as they do (Your other two representatives are also not part of this discussion as they are irrelevant) have already decided this issue for you, and the train has left the station. The transition is set to occur by May 2013.

As this situation developed and unfolded, in the Spring of 2012, it was covered on a regular basis, here on OC Political.

With that resounding victory behind them, our council could turn their attention to more pressing matters, their re-election.

You may recall, that in 2010, a MEASURE Y appeared on your ballot. It involved ethics of City officials and essentially prohibited any candidate from accepting any donation from ANY contractor with the city. This was targeted at that time at specific organizations, such as the Chamber of Commerce, that had in the past, ventured so far as to endorse business friendly candidates. It was a witch hunt environment that surrounded the 2010 City Council election and the Measure (which was identical to a City Ordinance that had already passed and been made law) and certainly chilled the free speech of many in our city and discouraged involvement in the process.

The supporters, again Schwing, Rikel, Anderson, of Measure Y, promoted it as a measure that was consistent with the overall approach of the Republican party, locally and statewide to reel in candidates whose campaigns may be funded by Government Employee Unions.

Of the Majority Three, only Anderson was up for re-election in 2010.

In 2012, both Schwing and Rikel are facing re-election.

Following their granting of the $10 million dollar policing contract to the Orange County Sheriff Department, it was nice of the Union to repay them with the two very large (8×10 glossy, 2 sided) mail pieces that went to voters in Yorba Linda.

“The fiscal conservative team we can trust”…..Yep. So long as your definition of ‘fiscal conservative’ means union hack. “Leaving no stone unturned to root out government waste”, when you define government waste as 40 years of institutional knowledge. Well they’ve certainly rooted out something, and I can only wonder if and when Yorba Linda voters are going to stand up to the charade.

These incumbents, in their other mailers, boast prolifically about their “endorsements”. I can not speak to the process by with Assemblyman Hagman and Congressman Royce made their decision to endorse these incumbents, but I was present for the Orange County Republican Party Endorsement approval.

On such races, there is no discussion in and among the Central Committee of the Orange County Republican Party. These candidates were the only ones who turned in their requests for endorsements on time, and this is not unusual in small city races. Inexperienced candidates, often with no political professionals to advise them, do not realize the early filing date, and the rapid fire manner in which the endorsements are granted. There were only the two applications for this race. They are Republican. They are incumbents. There was not discussion, no vetting.

However, because the Orange County Republican party is very concerned about fiscal issues, making sure we help true fiscal conservatives to get elected, and not usher in more special interest lackeys, there is an application. Four pages of fairly extensive, Republican ideal quizzing. On Page One, the applying candidate must sign the following “Union-Free” pledge:


I’m not sure how Mr. Schwing and Ms. Rikel want to explain this, because their application would not have ben processed by the Central Committee without it all complete. Perhaps they will say the mailers were a “spontaneous protest” and not a “pre-planned strategic strike”. Are the pledge and the policies to mean anything? Not to mention the outright violation of their own law. I fully anticipate their argument about semantics will be that these mailers were not ‘contributions’ processed by their campaigns. We will soon know what the voters have to say about it all.

Posted in 3rd Supervisorial District, 55th Assembly District, Brea, Republican Central Committee, Uncategorized, Yorba Linda | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments »