The deadline for semi-annual campaign disclosure forms covering the last half of 2012 came due last week. The documents provide a clearer picture of how winning and losing candidates raised money and how they spent it—or misspent it—in the final weeks of the campaign. We also tracked a number of political action committees (PACs). The most interesting findings: How much money was wasted in trying to defeat Councilmember Rose Herrera, a potential quid pro quo between the ChamberPAC and a person quoted in its ballot statement against minimum wage, and hangover debt for losing candidates Jimmy Nguyen and Robert Braunstein.Read More 8
Billions spent nationally, two years of nonstop campaigning and essentially nothing changed. But the outcome of Tuesday’s election will help the economy. Gov. Jerry Brown reigns supreme. People voted to tax themselves and Democrats have super majorities in the legislature. Happy days are here again!Read More 73
Metro reported this week that Supervisor George Shirakawa—the top elected official in the county—has been submitting fraudulent expense reports. He has spent thousands of dollars on lavish dinners, alcohol and luxury hotel rooms and rental cars with a county credit card. Amazingly, he avoided detection despite two audits of his county credit card purchases. Many of the people Shirakawa treated to meals were unaware that taxpayers were picking up the tab, and have since sent checks reimbursing the county. This group includes San Jose Police Chief Chris Moore.Read More 10
And to think there’s still six more days of crazy before District 8 voters go to the polls. The expensive race between Rose Herrera, Evergreen’s City Council incumbent, and Jimmy Nguyen has had it share of distractions, but now come conflicting allegations over Herrera’s husband attempting to put Nguyen’s campaign signs in a park trash can late Monday night.Read More 40
The spillover from Milpitas’ toxic political landscape has finally seeped over to San Jose. On Tuesday, Milpitas councilmember Debbie Giordano requested the city’s attorney investigate council colleague Armando Gomez’s fundraising activities for San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed. The direction by Giordano seems to be a direct response to Gomez—a senior budget advisor to Reed—targeting a lobbying loophole that he says Giordano and political consultant Vic Ajlouny have taken advantage of.Read More 3
Union Leader Randy Sekany pounds the table and rails about the way the city spends money.
“I mean, $150,000 on ergonomic chairs? When you’re firing people? When you’ve cut back how many employees? There’s not a few spare chairs around? Really?”
Sekany circulated a document around City Hall headlined “City Spending Gone Wild,” which details more than $7 million worth of expenditures on a range of items and services, from hybrid Priuses to real estate assessments. The union assembled the numbers in response to City Manager Debra Figone’s request that they take a 10 percent pay cut, reduce the number of engine companies from 34 to 29 and lay off 80-plus sworn firefighters.Read More 53