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Nuaimi Forms Districts to Levy Taxes/Bonds on Yucca Valley Property Owners

By   /   June 4, 2011  /   37 Comments

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WILL THE TOWN COUNCIL “RUBBER-STAMP” NUAIMI’S TAX IDEA THAT FAILED IN COLTON WHEN IT WAS VETOED BY THE GOVERNOR?

The Governor vetoed the bill stating, “I am concerned that this bill deprives residents from the City of Colton of their right to vote on a proposal to form an Infrastructure Financing District (IFD) and to issue property tax allocation bonds to pay for capital improvements.”

At the Town Council meeting of June 7th, Yucca Valley Town Manager, Mark Nuaimi, slips in a Resolution to form Community Facilities Districts (CFD) for the purpose of levying taxes, and Special Tax Liens to fund Bonds (debt).

This item #9,  is listed on the Town Council Agenda as a CONSENT AGENDA item WITHOUT a prior Council review or study session on this matter. 

As stated in the agenda packet of  296 pages, “Consent agenda are considered to be routine items or are considered formal documents covering previous Town Council instruction…….”  This is truly NOT the case on this item.  Adopting “Goals and Policies” to levy special taxes without discussions to be adopted at their August 2nd meeting? What is the rush?

Nuaimi may be counting on the new inexperienced Council Members to follow in lock step without any discussion on this matter to “rubber-stamp” his plan.  Maybe they will not even read the agenda, or ask any questions, he might think.

There are two Resolutions on this item #9, which should have been separated.  The District to be formed for G & L Investments for the Warren Vista Shopping Center is included along with the Resolution to form “Community Facilities Districts”, or CFD, General Public.  Besides, two Council members may not be able to vote on this matter due to recently receiving campaign contributions from the developer.

Nuaimi may advise the newbie members they do not  have to pay any attention to campaign contributors, and yet he recused himself on voting when LAFCO voted to approve the Fontana land grab. Then Fontana Mayor Nuaimi recused himself due to receiving a campaign donation. Council members,  Nuaimi should not be giving legal advice.

This vehicle called, Community Facilities Districts, is similar to the failed attempt of Mark Nuaimi to form an infrastructure finance district in Colton which was eventually vetoed the Governor. See this link for story:

“Needless to say this debacle left both Nuaimi and State Senator McLeod with egg on their faces.”

The Town Council of Yucca Valley is being rushed, again, by Nuaimi to rubber stamp this plan of his to raise taxes on property owners, which has not been a part of their campaign platform of no new taxes and protecting property owner rights.

Yucca Valley Town Council- You were elected by the citizens and Town Manager Mark Nuaimi works FOR YOU!  Please consider study sessions to shed some light on this issue of  placing taxes on property owners.

What is the rush?

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About the author

Margo Sturges

Yucca Valley Editor

Note: Margo Sturges has written many articles for Cactus Thorns and is the founder of Citizens4Change.info. Email contact: MargoSturgesYV(at)aol.com "In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act."- George Orwell

37 Comments

  1. John Q says:

    Do Props 13 and 218 play a role in this matter?

    John Q

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  2. John Q-I do not know the answer to your question. If you have any knowledge, general or specific, please post some "cliff notes" for the readers.

    Thank you,

    Margo

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  3. Branson Hunter Branson Hunter says:

    Many readers may not be aware that given the content of Margo' article, it’s not something where you attend a few meeting and then write an article about it. Her article is a culmination of at least a hundred hours of researching the subject matter over a period of months (since the beginning of the year).

    The Town Manager appears to routinely give legal advice to his burgeoning disciples on the Town Council. I think the YVTC remember that above all else they are directly responsible to the residents of Yucca Valley. They are in charge. The Town Manger is a functionary.

    Not so sure about Mayor Pro Tem Frank Luckino. He’s not a very responsible council member. That is clear from his on-going conflicting interests with the town.

    Off-Topic: Yucca Valley needs to focus on its own problems, instead of the problems of the HDWD. And committing tens of millions of dollars to the HDWD is insane, its even more insane to raise taxes for other project into the next thirty year -- in addition to the sewer project.

    A test for two members on the YVTC is Item #9 on the Council Agenda.

    Will two members recuse themselves from a vote because they recently receiving campaign contributions from the developer? Will the Town Manager advise the YVTC they need not worry about a conflict of interest with the developer.

    Will someone file a FPPC complaint over this?

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    • Fontana Mayor Mark Nuaimi recuses himself due to campaign donations received. Here is the link readers:
      FONTANA OKs LAND GRAB
      http://www.sbsun.com/ci_4192666?IADID=Search-www.sbsun.com-www.sbsun.com

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      • Mark Nuaimi Mark Nuaimi says:

        Elected officials are not required to recuse themselves from items involving campaign contributions. Appinted officials are required to recuse themselves from matters involving anyone who has made a campaign contribution.

        Therefore, anyone who is an elected official but represents their community as an appointed member (like on SANBAG or LAFCO) must recuse themselves from matters before those appointed agencies where a campaign contributor has an item under consideration.

        Hope this explains why the recusal on LAFCO and why at every SANBAG board meeting you'll hear members recusing themselves from items where they received campaign contributions within the past 12 months.

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        • Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

          Marks says, "Elected officials are not required to recuse themselves from items involving campaign contributions."

          I am glad you are not my attorney.

          Here is a post for you:
          http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iPNVGiBF6ZGZuPdOaZrm8Nrwll2wD98MHREG0

          WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court ruled Monday that elected judges must step aside from cases when large campaign contributions from interested parties create the appearance of bias.

          By a 5-4 vote in a case from West Virginia, the court said that a judge who remained involved in a lawsuit filed against the company of the most generous supporter of his election deprived the other side of the constitutional right to a fair trial.

          With multimillion-dollar judicial election campaigns on the rise, the court's decision Monday could have widespread significance. Justice at Stake, which tracks campaign spending in judicial elections, says judges are elected in 39 states and that candidates for the highest state courts have raised more than $168 million since 2000.

          The West Virginia case involved more than $3 million spent by the chief executive of Massey Energy Co. to help elect state Supreme Court Justice Brent Benjamin. At the same time, Massey was appealing a verdict, which now totals $82.7 million with interest, in a dispute with a local coal company. Benjamin refused to step aside from the case, despite repeated requests, and was part of a 3-2 decision to overturn the verdict.

          And this was the first attempt at googling of your supposition. You really need to do your research before you pop off.

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          • Mark Nuaimi Mark Nuaimi says:

            Please note the following exception in Government Code 84308:

            (3)"Agency" means an agency as defined in Section 82003 except that it does not include the courts or any agency in the judicial branch of government, local governmental agencies whose members are directly elected by the voters, the Legislature, the Board of Equalization, or constitutional officers. However, this section applies to any person who is a member of an exempted agency but is acting as a voting member of another agency.

            CAL. GOV. CODE § 84308 : California Code - Section 84308

            (a)The definitions set forth in this subdivision shall govern the interpretation of this section.

            (1)"Party" means any person who files an application for, or is the subject of, a proceeding involving a license, permit, or other entitlement for use.

            (2)"Participant" means any person who is not a party but who actively supports or opposes a particular decision in a proceeding involving a license, permit, or other entitlement for use and who has a financial interest in the decision, as described in Article 1 (commencing with Section 87100) of Chapter 7. A person actively supports or opposes a particular decision in a proceeding if he or she lobbies in person the officers or employees of the agency, testifies in person before the agency, or otherwise acts to influence officers of the agency.

            (3)"Agency" means an agency as defined in Section 82003 except that it does not include the courts or any agency in the judicial branch of government, local governmental agencies whose members are directly elected by the voters, the Legislature, the Board of Equalization, or constitutional officers. However, this section applies to any person who is a member of an exempted agency but is acting as a voting member of another agency.

            (4)"Officer" means any elected or appointed officer of an agency, any alternate to an elected or appointed officer of an agency, and any candidate for elective office in an agency.

            (5)"License, permit, or other entitlement for use" means all business, professional, trade and land use licenses and permits and all other entitlements for use, including all entitlements for land use, all contracts (other than competitively bid, labor, or personal employment contracts), and all franchises.

            (6)"Contribution" includes contributions to candidates and committees in federal, state, or local elections.

            (b)No officer of an agency shall accept, solicit, or direct a contribution of more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250) from any party, or his or her agent, or from any participant, or his or her agent, while a proceeding involving a license, permit, or other entitlement for use is pending before the agency and for three months following the date a final decision is rendered in the proceeding if the officer knows or has reason to know that the participant has a financial interest, as that term is used in Article 1 (commencing with Section 87100) of Chapter 7. This prohibition shall apply regardless of whether the officer accepts, solicits, or directs the contribution for himself or herself, or on behalf of any other officer, or on behalf of any candidate for office or on behalf of any committee.

            (c)Prior to rendering any decision in a proceeding involving a license, permit or other entitlement for use pending before an agency, each officer of the agency who received a contribution within the preceding 12 months in an amount of more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250) from a party or from any participant shall disclose that fact on the record of the proceeding. No officer of an agency shall make, participate in making, or in any way attempt to use his or her official position to influence the decision in a proceeding involving a license, permit, or other entitlement for use pending before the agency if the officer has willfully or knowingly received a contribution in an amount of more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250) within the preceding 12 months from a party or his or her agent, or from any participant, or his or her agent if the officer knows or has reason to know that the participant has a financial interest in the decision, as that term is described with respect to public officials in Article 1 (commencing with Section 87100) of Chapter 7.

            If an officer receives a contribution which would otherwise require disqualification under this section, returns the contribution within 30 days from the time he or she knows, or should have known, about the contribution and the proceeding involving a license, permit, or other entitlement for use, he or she shall be permitted to participate in the proceeding.

            (d)A party to a proceeding before an agency involving a license, permit, or other entitlement for use shall disclose on the record of the proceeding any contribution in an amount of more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250) made within the preceding 12 months by the party, or his or her agent, to any officer of the agency. No party, or his or her agent, to a proceeding involving a license, permit, or other entitlement for use pending before any agency and no participant, or his or her agent, in the proceeding shall make a contribution of more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250) to any officer of that agency during the proceeding and for three months following the date a final decision is rendered by the agency in the proceeding. When a closed corporation is a party to, or a participant in, a proceeding involving a license, permit, or other entitlement for use pending before an agency, the majority shareholder is subject to the disclosure and prohibition requirements specified in subdivisions (b), (c), and this subdivision.

            (e)Nothing in this section shall be construed to imply that any contribution subject to being reported under this title shall not be so reported.

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            • Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

              Are you kidding? What does this have to do with elected officials receiving contributions and then acting upon a contributors issue?

              You've quoted gobbledygook. Off target, off subject, crap you're hoping that none of us read. It has nothing to do with the issue you proposed that “Elected officials are not required to recuse themselves from items involving campaign contributions.”

              Back to the drawing board Mark.

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            • Mark Nuaimi Mark Nuaimi says:

              Dan, perhaps you should take your issue up with the state of California Fair Political Practices Commission ...

              www.fppc.ca.gov

              When you visit their website, you will find a link that specifically addresses the issue of Campaign Contributions and Conflict of Interest:

              http://www.fppc.ca.gov/index.php?id=103

              It specifically references the Government Code that I cite.

              Have a great day.

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            • Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

              Mark,
              Take your ass whooping like a man and shut your pie hole.

              You lost this round, and anyone who is anyone knows it.

              Dan 6 - Mark Nuaimi 0

              :-)

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        • Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

          Put the beer can down, drop the tongs and move away from the BBQ.

          Here is the law...... Its in plan English... even you can understand.

          (Regulations of the Fair Political Practices Commission, Title 2, Division 6, California Code of
          Regulations)
          § 18438.7. Prohibitions and Disqualification Under Government Code Section 84308.
          For purposes of Government Code Section 84308,
          (a) An officer knows or has reason to know that a person has a financial interest in the
          decision in a proceeding if:
          (1) The person is a party; or
          (2) The person is a participant and reveals facts in his or her written or oral support or
          opposition before the agency which make the person's financial interest apparent.
          (b) An officer knows, or should have known, about a proceeding pending before the
          agency if either:
          (1) The officer has received notice of the license, permit or other entitlement proceeding.
          Notice includes receipt of an agenda or docket identifying the proceeding and the party or other
          persons affected by name; or
          (2) The officer has actual knowledge of the proceeding.
          (c) An officer knows, or should have known about a contribution if:
          (1) The contribution has been disclosed by the party pursuant to Section 84308(d); or
          (2) The officer has actual knowledge of the contribution.
          Note: Authority cited: Section 83112, Government Code. Reference: Section 84308,
          Government Code.
          HISTORY
          1. New section filed 1-26-83; effective thirtieth day thereafter (Register 83, No. 5).
          2. Amendment filed 2-22-85; effective thirtieth day thereafter (Register 85, No. 8).

          I swear the Town of Yucca Valley is paying you $190,000 for doodle brained logic and advise like your above post? Come on guys this guy is a dumb ass!!

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        • Branson Hunter Branson Hunter says:

          Mark, is there a proofreading error in your first sentence? You wrote: "Elected officials are not required to recuse themselves from items involving campaign contributions."

          You're not going to stand by this, are you? If so, can you cite the (non-existing) law. I can cite the law where elected officials are in deed required to recuse.

          I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt that this is not what you meant to write.

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          • Mark Nuaimi Mark Nuaimi says:

            Government Code Section 84308 specifically states in 84308(a)(3):

            "...except that it does not include the courts or any agency in the judicial branch of government, local governmental agencies whose members are directly elected by the voters, the Legislature, the Board of Equalization, or constitutional officers. However, this section applies to any person who is a member of an exempted agency but is acting as a voting member of another agency."

            "Local government agencies whose members are directly elected by the voters" is Town Council, City Council members, etc.

            "However, this section applies to any person who is a member of an exempted agency but is acting as a voting member of another agency." -- this is the reference made in the original comment about appointments to LAFCO and SANBAG.

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            • Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

              And what please are you trying say... because your above post is not declaratory of anything.

              What is your point in this post? Huh?

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            • Branson Hunter Branson Hunter says:

              Mark, your citations are non sequitur!

              With all due respect, I have over 20-years of making a living doing legal research, including complex legal issues.

              You are citing Government Code definitions which have little to do at all with the requirement that elected officials are required to recuse themselves from items involving campaign contributions where they are the recipient.

              This is a perfect example of why lay people (like yourself) should NOT give legal advice.

              .

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  4. Mark Nuaimi says:

    This item is formation of a maintenance CFD that is similiar to an LMD. No bonded indebtedness. It only applies to the Warren Vista development and was a condition of approval for the project CUP. The property owner votes in August to impose the maintenance assessment on themselves.

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  5. Yes, the 1st Resolution specifically lists the parcel numbers for Warren Vista Development.

    What about the second resolution which speaks in general terms giving YOU FULL authority to form your "Finance Committee" to determine tax levys, without approval of Town Council???

    Where is the oversight? The Fontana "Sim" card will not work in Yucca Valley. We do not have rail, trucking or freeway access.

    Your "Goals and Objectives" are just that, YOUR goals and objectives. Should be a study session in open meeting to discuss these issues instead you stash this in the "Consent Agenda" section?

    This document from your Nuaimi briefcase still reflects the use of the word "Board" from the last time it saw light of day. What project did you use it for previously? Please share.

    Please do not treat our elected Town Council members as if they were stupid idiots.
    The last time I checked most did not fall into that category.

    We elected them to represent US.

    You work for them as an employee and you are no longer a Fontana Mayor ,City Council member, member of SANBAG or member of LAFCO.

    It must be a tough withdrawal for you from all that power you had for so many years. Try Nicorette.

    Again, exactly what is the rush THIS time?

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  6. Bucky Thorton says:

    I vote we Fire Nuaimi now, cancel the sewer project and any other hair brained idea he has come up with and save the money first then pay for it!

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  7. Save the money first...what a novel idea!

    If 2/3rds of the voters elect to increase the sales tax by 1% AND it ALL goes to pay for a $95 million dollar sewer bond, this would save Yucca Valley!

    Our water will be protected, the resturants and commercial owners will have their sewer assessment paid for, thereby NOT passing on their costs to us customers, the landlords will have 100% sewer costs paid so as not to raise rents AND Grandma and Aunt Tilly will not lose their homes because their residential sewer will be hooked up and paid for!!

    Yes! Save Yucca Valley!

    Let's all join together and sing a song of joy! Gather up your metal bedpans from beneath your nightstand and a metal teaspoon for that Carribean samba drum beat!

    Ooops! Empty and rinse your bedpan first!

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  8. AnotherPowerGrab says:

    It looks like Town Manager Mark is giving Frank Luckino a run for the money to be the top alpha dog in Yucca Valley. Both have unbridled ambition, crave power and very big egos (in a very small Town).

    It will be interesting to see how it plays out. No doubt, Mark will be gone long before the former Town Manger, who generally, was off attending conferences and let the Deputy Town Manager run things. Speaking of which, how is Shane S. dealing with this new agressive Town Manager?

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  9. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    Just in case Mark is under the impression that the government code covers all government functions here is a few little gems from the Penal Code. Bribery thats what we are talking about. I give you a big donation I expect a favorable ruling.... that is human nature, but unfortunately that is bribery.

    California Penal Code

    67. Every person who gives or offers any bribe to any executive
    officer in this state, with intent to influence him in respect to any
    act, decision, vote, opinion, or other proceeding as such officer,
    is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for two, three or
    four years, and is disqualified from holding any office in this
    state.

    67.5. (a) Every person who gives or offers as a bribe to any
    ministerial officer, employee, or appointee of the State of
    California, county or city therein, or political subdivision thereof,
    any thing the theft of which would be petty theft is guilty of a
    misdemeanor.
    (b) If the theft of the thing given or offered would be grand
    theft the offense is a felony.

    67.5. (a) Every person who gives or offers as a bribe to any
    ministerial officer, employee, or appointee of the State of
    California, county or city therein, or political subdivision thereof,
    any thing the theft of which would be petty theft is guilty of a
    misdemeanor.
    (b) If the theft of the thing given or offered would be grand
    theft the offense is a felony punishable by imprisonment pursuant to
    subdivision (h) of Section 1170.

    68. (a) Every executive or ministerial officer, employee, or
    appointee of the State of California, a county or city therein, or a
    political subdivision thereof, who asks, receives, or agrees to
    receive, any bribe, upon any agreement or understanding that his or
    her vote, opinion, or action upon any matter then pending, or that
    may be brought before him or her in his or her official capacity,
    shall be influenced thereby, is punishable by imprisonment in the
    state prison for two, three, or four years and, in cases in which no
    bribe has been actually received, by a restitution fine of not less
    than two thousand dollars ($2,000) or not more than ten thousand
    dollars ($10,000) or, in cases in which a bribe was actually
    received, by a restitution fine of at least the actual amount of the
    bribe received or two thousand dollars ($2,000), whichever is
    greater, or any larger amount of not more than double the amount of
    any bribe received or ten thousand dollars ($10,000), whichever is
    greater, and, in addition thereto, forfeits his or her office,
    employment, or appointment, and is forever disqualified from holding
    any office, employment, or appointment, in this state.
    (b) In imposing a restitution fine pursuant to this section, the
    court shall consider the defendant's ability to pay the fine.

    69. Every person who attempts, by means of any threat or violence,
    to deter or prevent an executive officer from performing any duty
    imposed upon such officer by law, or who knowingly resists, by the
    use of force or violence, such officer, in the performance of his
    duty, is punishable by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars
    ($10,000), or by imprisonment in the state prison, or in a county
    jail not exceeding one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

    69. Every person who attempts, by means of any threat or violence,
    to deter or prevent an executive officer from performing any duty
    imposed upon such officer by law, or who knowingly resists, by the
    use of force or violence, such officer, in the performance of his
    duty, is punishable by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars
    ($10,000), or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section
    1170, or in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by both such
    fine and imprisonment.

    70. (a) Every executive or ministerial officer, employee, or
    appointee of the State of California, or any county or city therein,
    or any political subdivision thereof, who knowingly asks, receives,
    or agrees to receive any emolument, gratuity, or reward, or any
    promise thereof excepting such as may be authorized by law for doing
    an official act, is guilty of a misdemeanor.
    (b) This section does not prohibit deputy registrars of voters
    from receiving compensation when authorized by local ordinance from
    any candidate, political committee, or statewide political
    organization for securing the registration of voters.
    (c) (1) Nothing in this section precludes a peace officer, as
    defined in Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of
    Part 2, from engaging in, or being employed in, casual or part-time
    employment as a private security guard or patrolman for a public
    entity while off duty from his or her principal employment and
    outside his or her regular employment as a peace officer of a state
    or local agency, and exercising the powers of a peace officer
    concurrently with that employment, provided that the peace officer is
    in a police uniform and is subject to reasonable rules and
    regulations of the agency for which he or she is a peace officer.
    Notwithstanding the above provisions, any and all civil and criminal
    liability arising out of the secondary employment of any peace
    officer pursuant to this subdivision shall be borne by the officer's
    secondary employer.
    (2) It is the intent of the Legislature by this subdivision to
    abrogate the holdings in People v. Corey, 21 Cal.3d 738, and
    Cervantez v. J.C. Penney Co., 24 Cal.3d 579, to reinstate prior
    judicial interpretations of this section as they relate to criminal
    sanctions for battery on peace officers who are employed, on a
    part-time or casual basis, by a public entity, while wearing a police
    uniform as private security guards or patrolmen, and to allow the
    exercise of peace officer powers concurrently with that employment.
    (d) (1) Nothing in this section precludes a peace officer, as
    defined in Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of
    Part 2, from engaging in, or being employed in, casual or part-time
    employment as a private security guard or patrolman by a private
    employer while off duty from his or her principal employment and
    outside his or her regular employment as a peace officer, and
    exercising the powers of a peace officer concurrently with that
    employment, provided that all of the following are true:
    (A) The peace officer is in his or her police uniform.
    (B) The casual or part-time employment as a private security guard
    or patrolman is approved by the county board of supervisors with
    jurisdiction over the principal employer or by the board's designee
    or by the city council with jurisdiction over the principal employer
    or by the council's designee.
    (C) The wearing of uniforms and equipment is approved by the
    principal employer.
    (D) The peace officer is subject to reasonable rules and
    regulations of the agency for which he or she is a peace officer.
    (2) Notwithstanding the above provisions, a peace officer while
    off duty from his or her principal employment and outside his or her
    regular employment as a peace officer of a state or local agency
    shall not exercise the powers of a police officer if employed by a
    private employer as a security guard during a strike, lockout,
    picketing, or other physical demonstration of a labor dispute at the
    site of the strike, lockout, picketing, or other physical
    demonstration of a labor dispute. The issue of whether or not casual
    or part-time employment as a private security guard or patrolman
    pursuant to this subdivision is to be approved shall not be a subject
    for collective bargaining. Any and all civil and criminal liability
    arising out of the secondary employment of any peace officer pursuant
    to this subdivision shall be borne by the officer's principal
    employer. The principal employer shall require the secondary employer
    to enter into an indemnity agreement as a condition of approving
    casual or part-time employment pursuant to this subdivision.
    (3) It is the intent of the Legislature by this subdivision to
    abrogate the holdings in People v. Corey, 21 Cal. 3d 738, and
    Cervantez v. J. C. Penney Co., 24 Cal. 3d 579, to reinstate prior
    judicial interpretations of this section as they relate to criminal
    sanctions for battery on peace officers who are employed, on a
    part-time or casual basis, while wearing a police uniform approved by
    the principal employer, as private security guards or patrolmen, and
    to allow the exercise of peace officer powers concurrently with that
    employment.
    (e) (1) Nothing in this section precludes a peace officer, as
    defined in Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of
    Part 2, from engaging in, or being employed in, other employment
    while off duty from his or her principal employment and outside his
    or her regular employment as a peace officer of a state or local
    agency.
    (2) Subject to subdivisions (c) and (d), and except as provided by
    written regulations or policies adopted by the employing state or
    local agency, or pursuant to an agreement between the employing state
    or local agency and a recognized employee organization representing
    the peace officer, no peace officer shall be prohibited from engaging
    in, or being employed in, other employment while off duty from his
    or her principal employment and outside his or her regular employment
    as a peace officer of a state or local agency.
    (3) If an employer withholds consent to allow a peace officer to
    engage in or be employed in other employment while off duty, the
    employer shall, at the time of denial, provide the reasons for denial
    in writing to the peace officer.

    70.5. Every commissioner of civil marriages or every deputy
    commissioner of civil marriages who accepts any money or other thing
    of value for performing any marriage pursuant to Section 401 of the
    Family Code, including any money or thing of value voluntarily
    tendered by the persons about to be married or who have been married
    by the commissioner of civil marriages or deputy commissioner of
    civil marriages, other than a fee expressly imposed by law for
    performance of a marriage, whether the acceptance occurs before or
    after performance of the marriage and whether or not performance of
    the marriage is conditioned on the giving of such money or the thing
    of value by the persons being married, is guilty of a misdemeanor.
    It is not a necessary element of the offense described by this
    section that the acceptance of the money or other thing of value be
    committed with intent to commit extortion or with other criminal
    intent.
    This section does not apply to the request or acceptance by any
    retired commissioner of civil marriages of a fee for the performance
    of a marriage.
    This section is inapplicable to the acceptance of a fee for the
    performance of a marriage on Saturday, Sunday, or a legal holiday.

    71. Every person who, with intent to cause, attempts to cause, or
    causes, any officer or employee of any public or private educational
    institution or any public officer or employee to do, or refrain from
    doing, any act in the performance of his duties, by means of a
    threat, directly communicated to such person, to inflict an unlawful
    injury upon any person or property, and it reasonably appears to the
    recipient of the threat that such threat could be carried out, is
    guilty of a public offense punishable as follows:
    (1) Upon a first conviction, such person is punishable by a fine
    not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by imprisonment in
    the state prison, or in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by
    both such fine and imprisonment.
    (2) If such person has been previously convicted of a violation of
    this section, such previous conviction shall be charged in the
    accusatory pleading, and if such previous conviction is found to be
    true by the jury, upon a jury trial, or by the court, upon a court
    trial, or is admitted by the defendant, he is punishable by
    imprisonment in the state prison.
    As used in this section, "directly communicated" includes, but is
    not limited to, a communication to the recipient of the threat by
    telephone, telegraph, or letter.

    71. (a) Every person who, with intent to cause, attempts to cause,
    or causes, any officer or employee of any public or private
    educational institution or any public officer or employee to do, or
    refrain from doing, any act in the performance of his duties, by
    means of a threat, directly communicated to such person, to inflict
    an unlawful injury upon any person or property, and it reasonably
    appears to the recipient of the threat that such threat could be
    carried out, is guilty of a public offense punishable as follows:
    (1) Upon a first conviction, such person is punishable by a fine
    not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by imprisonment
    pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170, or in a county jail not
    exceeding one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment.
    (2) If the person has been previously convicted of a violation of
    this section, such previous conviction shall be charged in the
    accusatory pleading, and if that previous conviction is found to be
    true by the jury, upon a jury trial, or by the court, upon a court
    trial, or is admitted by the defendant, he or she is punishable by
    imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.
    (b) As used in this section, "directly communicated" includes, but
    is not limited to, a communication to the recipient of the threat by
    telephone, telegraph, or letter.

    72. Every person who, with intent to defraud, presents for
    allowance or for payment to any state board or officer, or to any
    county, city, or district board or officer, authorized to allow or
    pay the same if genuine, any false or fraudulent claim, bill,
    account, voucher, or writing, is punishable either by imprisonment in
    the county jail for a period of not more than one year, by a fine of
    not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both such
    imprisonment and fine, or by imprisonment in the state prison, by a
    fine of not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both such
    imprisonment and fine.
    As used in this section "officer" includes a "carrier," as defined
    in subdivision (a) of Section 14124.70 of the Welfare and
    Institutions Code, authorized to act as an agent for a state board or
    officer or a county, city, or district board or officer, as the case
    may be.

    72. Every person who, with intent to defraud, presents for
    allowance or for payment to any state board or officer, or to any
    county, city, or district board or officer, authorized to allow or
    pay the same if genuine, any false or fraudulent claim, bill,
    account, voucher, or writing, is punishable either by imprisonment in
    the county jail for a period of not more than one year, by a fine of
    not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that
    imprisonment and fine, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h)
    of Section 1170, by a fine of not exceeding ten thousand dollars
    ($10,000), or by both such imprisonment and fine.
    As used in this section "officer" includes a "carrier," as defined
    in subdivision (a) of Section 14124.70 of the Welfare and
    Institutions Code, authorized to act as an agent for a state board or
    officer or a county, city, or district board or officer, as the case
    may be.

    72.5. (a) Every person who, knowing a claim seeks public funds for
    reimbursement of costs incurred in attending a political function
    organized to support or oppose any political party or political
    candidate, presents such a claim for allowance or for payment to any
    state board or officer, or to any county, city, or district board or
    officer authorized to allow or pay such claims, is punishable either
    by imprisonment in the county jail for a period of not more than one
    year, by a fine of not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by
    both such imprisonment and fine, or by imprisonment in the state
    prison, by a fine of not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or
    by both such imprisonment and fine.
    (b) Every person who, knowing a claim seeks public funds for
    reimbursement of costs incurred to gain admittance to a political
    function expressly organized to support or oppose any ballot measure,
    presents such a claim for allowance or for payment to any state
    board or officer, or to any county, city, or district board or
    officer authorized to allow or pay such claims is punishable either
    by imprisonment in the county jail for a period of not more than one
    year, by a fine of not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by
    both such imprisonment and fine, or by imprisonment in the state
    prison, by a fine of not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or
    by both such imprisonment and fine.

    72.5. (a) Every person who, knowing a claim seeks public funds for
    reimbursement of costs incurred in attending a political function
    organized to support or oppose any political party or political
    candidate, presents such a claim for allowance or for payment to any
    state board or officer, or to any county, city, or district board or
    officer authorized to allow or pay such claims, is punishable either
    by imprisonment in the county jail for a period of not more than one
    year, by a fine of not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by
    both such imprisonment and fine, or by imprisonment pursuant to
    subdivision (h) of Section 1170, by a fine of not exceeding ten
    thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both such imprisonment and fine.
    (b) Every person who, knowing a claim seeks public funds for
    reimbursement of costs incurred to gain admittance to a political
    function expressly organized to support or oppose any ballot measure,
    presents such a claim for allowance or for payment to any state
    board or officer, or to any county, city, or district board or
    officer authorized to allow or pay those claims is punishable either
    by imprisonment in the county jail for a period of not more than one
    year, by a fine of not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by
    both that imprisonment and fine, or by imprisonment pursuant to
    subdivision (h) of Section 1170, by a fine of not exceeding ten
    thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

    73. Every person who gives or offers any gratuity or reward, in
    consideration that he or any other person shall be appointed to any
    public office, or shall be permitted to exercise or discharge the
    duties thereof, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

    74. Every public officer who, for any gratuity or reward, appoints
    another person to a public office, or permits another person to
    exercise or discharge any of the duties of his office, is punishable
    by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), and, in
    addition thereto, forfeits his office and is forever disqualified
    from holding any office in this state.

    76. (a) Every person who knowingly and willingly threatens the life
    of, or threatens serious bodily harm to, any elected public
    official, county public defender, county clerk, exempt appointee of
    the Governor, judge, or Deputy Commissioner of the Board of Prison
    Terms, or the staff, immediate family, or immediate family of the
    staff of any elected public official, county public defender, county
    clerk, exempt appointee of the Governor, judge, or Deputy
    Commissioner of the Board of Prison Terms, with the specific intent
    that the statement is to be taken as a threat, and the apparent
    ability to carry out that threat by any means, is guilty of a public
    offense, punishable as follows:
    (1) Upon a first conviction, the offense is punishable by a fine
    not exceeding five thousand dollars ($5,000), or by imprisonment in
    the state prison, or in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by
    both that fine and imprisonment.
    (2) If the person has been convicted previously of violating this
    section, the previous conviction shall be charged in the accusatory
    pleading, and if the previous conviction is found to be true by the
    jury upon a jury trial, or by the court upon a court trial, or is
    admitted by the defendant, the offense is punishable by imprisonment
    in the state prison.
    (b) Any law enforcement agency that has knowledge of a violation
    of this section involving a constitutional officer of the state, a
    Member of the Legislature, or a member of the judiciary shall
    immediately report that information to the Department of the
    California Highway Patrol.
    (c) For purposes of this section, the following definitions shall
    apply:
    (1) "Apparent ability to carry out that threat" includes the
    ability to fulfill the threat at some future date when the person
    making the threat is an incarcerated prisoner with a stated release
    date.
    (2) "Serious bodily harm" includes serious physical injury or
    serious traumatic condition.
    (3) "Immediate family" means a spouse, parent, or child, or anyone
    who has regularly resided in the household for the past six months.
    (4) "Staff of a judge" means court officers and employees,
    including commissioners, referees, and retired judges sitting on
    assignment.
    (5) "Threat" means a verbal or written threat or a threat implied
    by a pattern of conduct or a combination of verbal or written
    statements and conduct made with the intent and the apparent ability
    to carry out the threat so as to cause the person who is the target
    of the threat to reasonably fear for his or her safety or the safety
    of his or her immediate family.
    (d) As for threats against staff or immediate family of staff, the
    threat must relate directly to the official duties of the staff of
    the elected public official, county public defender, county clerk,
    exempt appointee of the Governor, judge, or Deputy Commissioner of
    the Board of Prison Terms in order to constitute a public offense
    under this section.
    (e) A threat must relate directly to the official duties of a
    Deputy Commissioner of the Board of Prison Terms in order to
    constitute a public offense under this section.

    76. (a) Every person who knowingly and willingly threatens the life
    of, or threatens serious bodily harm to, any elected public
    official, county public defender, county clerk, exempt appointee of
    the Governor, judge, or Deputy Commissioner of the Board of Prison
    Terms, or the staff, immediate family, or immediate family of the
    staff of any elected public official, county public defender, county
    clerk, exempt appointee of the Governor, judge, or Deputy
    Commissioner of the Board of Prison Terms, with the specific intent
    that the statement is to be taken as a threat, and the apparent
    ability to carry out that threat by any means, is guilty of a public
    offense, punishable as follows:
    (1) Upon a first conviction, the offense is punishable by a fine
    not exceeding five thousand dollars ($5,000), or by imprisonment
    pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170, or in a county jail not
    exceeding one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment.
    (2) If the person has been convicted previously of violating this
    section, the previous conviction shall be charged in the accusatory
    pleading, and if the previous conviction is found to be true by the
    jury upon a jury trial, or by the court upon a court trial, or is
    admitted by the defendant, the offense is punishable by imprisonment
    pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.
    (b) Any law enforcement agency that has knowledge of a violation
    of this section involving a constitutional officer of the state, a
    Member of the Legislature, or a member of the judiciary shall
    immediately report that information to the Department of the
    California Highway Patrol.
    (c) For purposes of this section, the following definitions shall
    apply:
    (1) "Apparent ability to carry out that threat" includes the
    ability to fulfill the threat at some future date when the person
    making the threat is an incarcerated prisoner with a stated release
    date.
    (2) "Serious bodily harm" includes serious physical injury or
    serious traumatic condition.
    (3) "Immediate family" means a spouse, parent, or child, or anyone
    who has regularly resided in the household for the past six months.
    (4) "Staff of a judge" means court officers and employees,
    including commissioners, referees, and retired judges sitting on
    assignment.
    (5) "Threat" means a verbal or written threat or a threat implied
    by a pattern of conduct or a combination of verbal or written
    statements and conduct made with the intent and the apparent ability
    to carry out the threat so as to cause the person who is the target
    of the threat to reasonably fear for his or her safety or the safety
    of his or her immediate family.
    (d) As for threats against staff or immediate family of staff, the
    threat must relate directly to the official duties of the staff of
    the elected public official, county public defender, county clerk,
    exempt appointee of the Governor, judge, or Deputy Commissioner of
    the Board of Prison Terms in order to constitute a public offense
    under this section.
    (e) A threat must relate directly to the official duties of a
    Deputy Commissioner of the Board of Prison Terms in order to
    constitute a public offense under this section.

    77. The various provisions of this title, except Section 76, apply
    to administrative and ministerial officers, in the same manner as if
    they were mentioned therein.

    85. Every person who gives or offers to give a bribe to any Member
    of the Legislature, any member of the legislative body of a city,
    county, city and county, school district, or other special district,
    or to another person for the member, or attempts by menace, deceit,
    suppression of truth, or any corrupt means, to influence a member in
    giving or withholding his or her vote, or in not attending the house
    or any committee of which he or she is a member, is punishable by
    imprisonment in the state prison for two, three or four years.

    86. Every Member of either house of the Legislature, or any member
    of the legislative body of a city, county, city and county, school
    district, or other special district, who asks, receives, or agrees to
    receive, any bribe, upon any understanding that his or her official
    vote, opinion, judgment, or action shall be influenced thereby, or
    shall give, in any particular manner, or upon any particular side of
    any question or matter upon which he or she may be required to act in
    his or her official capacity, or gives, or offers or promises to
    give, any official vote in consideration that another Member of the
    Legislature, or another member of the legislative body of a city,
    county, city and county, school district, or other special district
    shall give this vote either upon the same or another question, is
    punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for two, three, or
    four years and, in cases in which no bribe has been actually
    received, by a restitution fine of not less than two thousand dollars
    ($2,000) or not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000) or, in
    cases in which a bribe was actually received, by a restitution fine
    of at least the actual amount of the bribe received or two thousand
    dollars ($2,000), whichever is greater, or any larger amount of not
    more than double the amount of any bribe received or ten thousand
    dollars ($10,000), whichever is greater.
    In imposing a fine under this section, the court shall consider
    the defendant's ability to pay the fine.

    88. Every Member of the Legislature, and every member of a
    legislative body of a city, county, city and county, school district,
    or other special district convicted of any crime defined in this
    title, in addition to the punishment prescribed, forfeits his or her
    office and is forever disqualified from holding any office in this
    state or a political subdivision thereof.

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  10. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    From the pages of the FPPC:

    "My home is near the proposed new shopping mall. Can I vote on the issue at next month's Planning Commission meeting?"

    Many of you may have been confronted with such questions. This booklet is offered by the FPPC as a general overview of your obligations under the Political Reform Act's conflict-of-interest rules. Using non-technical terms, the booklet is aimed at helping you understand your obligations at the "big picture" level and to help guide you to more detailed resources.

    Stripped of legal jargon:

    You have a conflict of interest with regard to a particular government decision if it is sufficiently likely that the outcome of the decision will have an important impact on your economic interests, and

    a significant portion of your jurisdiction does not also feel the important impact on their economic interests.

    The voters who enacted the Political Reform Act by ballot measure in 1974 judged such circumstances to be enough to influence, or to appear to others to influence, your judgment with regard to that decision.

    The most important thing you can do to comply with this law is to learn to recognize the economic interests from which a conflict of interest can arise. No one ever has a conflict of interest under the Act "on general principles" or because of personal bias regarding a person or subject. A conflict of interest can only arise from particular kinds of economic interests, which are explained in non-technical terms later in this booklet.

    If you learn to understand these interests and to spot potential problems, the battle is mostly won because you can then seek help on the more technical details of the law from your agency's legal counsel or from the California Fair Political Practices Commission. The Commission's toll-free advice line is 1-866-ASK-FPPC (1-866-275-3772).

    Under rules adopted by the FPPC, deciding whether you have a financial conflict of interest under the Political Reform Act is an eight-step process. If you methodically think through the steps whenever there may be a problem, you can avoid most , if not all , mistakes. These steps are spelled out and explained in general terms in this booklet.

    If you learn nothing else from this booklet, remember these things:

    This law applies only to financial conflicts of interest; that is, conflicts of interest arising from economic interests.

    Whether you have a conflict of interest that disqualifies you depends heavily on the facts of each governmental decision.

    The most important proactive step you can take to avoid conflict of interest problems is learning to recognize the economic interests from which conflicts of interest can arise.

    Here are the eight steps:

    Step One: Are you a "public official" within the meaning of the rules?

    Step Two: Are you making, participating in making, or influencing a governmental decision?

    Step Three: What are your economic interests? That is, what are the possible sources of a financial conflict of interest?

    Step Four: Are your economic interests directly or indirectly involved in the governmental decision?

    Step Five: What kinds of financial impacts on your economic interests are considered important enough to trigger a conflict of interest?

    Step Six: The important question: Is it substantially likely that the governmental decision will result in one or more of the materiality standards being met for one or more of your economic interests?

    Step Seven: If you have a conflict of interest, does the "public generally" exception apply?

    Step Eight: Even if you have a disqualifying conflict of interest, is your participation legally required?

    Next, here is a non-technical explanation of each:

    Public Official

    Step One : Are you a "public official," within the meaning of the rules?

    The Act's conflict-of-interest rules apply to "public officials" as defined in the law. This first step in the analysis is usually a formality - you are probably a public official covered by the rules. If you are an elected official or an employee of a state or local government agency who is designated in your agency's conflict-of-interest code, you are a "public official." If you file a Statement of Economic Interests (Form 700) each year, you are a "public official" under the Act (even if you are not required to file a Form 700, in some cases you may still be considered a public official because the definition covers more than specifically designated employees). The cases that are tougher to determine typically involve consultants, investment managers and advisers, and public-private partnerships. If you have any doubts, contact your agency's legal counsel or the FPPC.

    Governmental Decision

    Step Two : Are you making, participating in making, or influencing a governmental decision?

    The second step in the process is deciding if you are engaging in the kind of conduct regulated by the conflict-of-interest rules. The Act's conflict-of-interest rules apply when you:

    Make a governmental decision (for example, by voting or making an appointment).

    Participate in making a governmental decision (for example, by giving advice or making recommendations to the decision-maker).

    Influence a governmental decision (for example, by communicating with the decision-maker).

    A good rule of thumb for deciding whether your actions constitute making, participating in making, or influencing a governmental decision is to ask yourself if you are exercising discretion or judgment with regard to the decision. If the answer is "yes," then your conduct with regard to the decision is very probably covered.

    When you have a conflict - Regulation 18702.5 (special rule for section 87200 public officials)

    Government Code section 87105 and regulation 18702.5 outline a procedure that public officials specified in section 87200 must follow for disclosure of economic interests when they have a conflict of interest at a public meeting. The full text of this law and regulation may be viewed in the Regulations section of the FPPC's website at http://www.fppc.ca.gov.

    Public officials specified in section 87200 of the Government Code, such as council members, planning commissioners, and boards of supervisors, must publicly identify in detail the economic interest that creates the conflict, step down from the dais and must then leave the room. This identification must be following the announcement of the agenda item to be discussed or voted upon, but before either the discussion or vote commences.

    Additionally, the disqualified official may not be counted toward achieving a quorum while the item is being discussed.

    The identification of the conflict and economic interest must be made orally and shall be made part of the public record.

    Exceptions:

    If the decision is to take place during a closed session, the identification of the economic interest must be made during the public meeting prior to the closed session but is limited to a declaration that the official has a conflict of interest. The economic interest that is the basis for the conflict need not be disclosed. The official may not be present during consideration of the closed session item and may not obtain or review any non-public information regarding the decision.

    A public official is not required to leave the room for an agenda item on the consent calendar provided that the official recuses himself or herself and publicly discloses the economic interest as described above.

    A public official may speak as a member of the general public only when the economic interest that is the basis for the conflict is a personal economic interest, for example, his or her personal residence or wholly owned business. The official must leave the dais to speak from the same area as the members of the public and may listen to the public discussion of the matter.

    Examples:

    The Arroyo City Council is considering widening the street in front of council member Smith's personal residence, which he solely owns. Council member Smith must disclose on the record that his home creates a conflict of interest preventing him from participating in the vote. He must leave the dais but can sit in the public area, speak on the matter as it applies to him and listen to the public discussion.

    Planning Commissioner Garcia is a greater than 10% partner in an engineering firm. The firm represents a client who is an applicant on a project pending before the planning commission. Commissioner Garcia must publicly disclose that the applicant is a source of income to her requiring her recusal. Commissioner Garcia must step down from the dais and leave the room. Since this is not a personal interest that is the basis for the conflict, she may not sit in the public area and listen to the discussion.

    Supervisor Robertson rents a home to a county employee. The county employee is the subject of a disciplinary matter in a closed session of the Board of Supervisors. During the open session prior to adjourning to closed session, Supervisor Robertson announces that he must recuse himself from participating in the closed session but does not disclose that the reason for his recusal is a source of income nor does he name the county employee that is the source of income to him. He may not attend the closed session or obtain any non-public information from the closed session.

    Economic Interests

    Step Three : What are your economic interests? That is, what are the possible sources of a financial conflict of interest?

    From a practical point of view, this third step is the most important part of the law for you. The Act's conflict-of-interest provisions apply only to conflicts of interest arising from economic interests. There are six kinds of such economic interests from which conflicts of interest can arise:

    Business Investment. You have an economic interest in a business entity in which you, your spouse, your registered domestic partner, or your dependent children or anyone acting on your behalf has invested $2,000 or more.

    Business Employment or Management. You have an economic interest in a business entity for which you are a director, officer, partner, trustee, employee, or hold any position of management.

    Real Property. You have an economic interest in real property in which you, your spouse, your registered domestic partner, or your dependent children or anyone acting on your behalf has invested $2,000 or more, and also in certain leasehold interests.

    Sources of Income. You have an economic interest in anyone, whether an individual or an organization, from whom you have received (or from whom you have been promised) $500 or more in income within 12 months prior to the decision about which you are concerned. When thinking about sources of income, keep in mind that you have a community property interest in your spouse's or registered domestic partner's income , a person from whom your spouse or registered domestic partner receives income may also be a source of a conflict of interest to you. Also keep in mind that if you, your spouse, your registered domestic partner or your dependent children own 10 percent of more of a business, you are considered to be receiving "pass-through" income from the business's clients. In other words, the business's clients may be considered sources of income to you.

    Gifts. You have an economic interest in anyone, whether an individual or an organization, who has given you gifts which total $420 or more within 12 months prior to the decision about which you are concerned.

    Personal Financial Effect. You have an economic interest in your personal expenses, income, assets, or liabilities, as well as those of your immediate family. This is known as the "personal financial effects" rule. If these expenses, income, assets or liabilities are likely to go up or down by $250 or more in a 12-month period as a result of the governmental decision, then the decision has a "personal financial effect" on you.

    On the Statement of Economic Interests (Form 700) you file each year, you disclose many of the economic interests that could cause a conflict of interest for you. However, be aware that not all of the economic interests that may cause a conflict of interest are listed on the Form 700. A good example is your home. It is common for a personal residence to be the economic interest that triggers a conflict of interest even though you are not required to disclose your home on the Form 700.

    Directly or Indirectly Involved?

    Step Four : Are your economic interests directly or indirectly involved in the governmental decision?

    An economic interest which is directly involved in " and therefore directly affected by " a governmental decision creates a bigger risk of a conflict of interest than does an economic interest which is only indirectly involved in the decision. As a result, the FPPC's conflict-of-interest regulations distinguish between economic interests that are directly involved and interests that are indirectly involved.

    Once you have identified your economic interests, you must next decide if they are directly involved in the governmental decision about which you are concerned. The FPPC has established specific rules for determining whether each kind of economic interest is directly or indirectly involved in a governmental decision.

    The details of these rules are beyond the scope of this guide. In general, however, an economic interest is directly involved if it is the subject of the governmental decision. For example, if the interest is real property, and the decision is about building a donut shop down the block from the property, then the interest is directly involved. If the interest is a business, and the decision is whether to grant a license for which the business has applied, the interest is directly involved.

    These are just examples; you should contact your agency counsel, the FPPC and the specific regulations if you have questions as each case arises. Note also that the next step in the analysis " applying the right standard to determine whether an impact is material " depends in part on whether the interest is directly or indirectly involved. The regulations , Sections 18704 through 18704.5 , and other helpful information can be found on the FPPC's web site, http://www.fppc.ca.gov.

    Materiality (Importance)

    Step Five : What kinds of financial impacts on your economic interests are considered important enough to trigger a conflict of interest?

    At the heart of deciding whether you have a conflict of interest is a prediction: Is it sufficiently likely that the governmental decision will have a material financial effect on your economic interests? As used here, the word "material" is akin to the term "important." You will have a conflict of interest only if it is reasonably foreseeable that the governmental decision will have an important impact on your economic interests.

    The FPPC has adopted rules for deciding what kinds of financial effects are important enough to trigger a conflict of interest. These rules are called "materiality standards," that is, they are the standards that should be used for judging what kinds of financial impacts resulting from governmental decisions are considered material or important.

    There are too many of these rules to review in detail in this booklet. Again, you can seek advice for your agency counsel or the FPPC. However, to understand the rules at a "big picture" level, remember these facts:

    If the economic interest is directly involved in the governmental decision, the standard or threshold for deeming a financial impact to be material is stricter (i.e. lower). This is because an economic interest that is directly involved in a governmental decision presents a bigger conflict-of-interest risk for the public official who holds the interest.

    On the other hand, if the economic interest is not directly involved, the materiality standard is more lenient because the indirectly involved interest presents a lesser danger of a conflict of interest.

    There are different sets of standards for the different types of economic interests. That is, there is one set of materiality standards for business entities, another set for real property interests, and so on.

    The rules vary by the size and situation of the economic interest. For example, a moment's thought will tell you that a $20,000 impact resulting from a governmental decision may be crucial to a small business, but may be a drop in the bucket for a big corporation. For example, the materiality standards distinguish between large and small businesses, between real property which is close or far from property which is the subject of the decision.

    Does a Conflict of Interest Result?

    Step Six : Is it substantially likely that the governmental decision will result in one or more of the materiality standards being met for one or more of your economic interests?

    As already mentioned in the introduction, the heart of the matter is deciding whether it is sufficiently likely that the outcome of the decision will have an important impact on your economic interests.

    What does "sufficiently likely" mean? Put another way, how "likely" is "likely enough?" The Political Reform Act uses the words "reasonably foreseeable." The FPPC has interpreted these words to mean "substantially likely." Generally speaking, the likelihood need not be a certainty, but it must be more than merely possible.

    A concrete way to think about this is to ask yourself the following question: Is it substantially likely that one of the materiality standards I identified in step five will be met as a result of the government decision? Step six calls for a factual determination, not necessarily a legal one. Also, an agency may sometimes segment (break down into separate decisions) a decision to allow participation by an official if certain conditions are met. Therefore, you should always look at your economic interest and how it fits into the entire factual picture surrounding the decision.

    "Public Generally" Exception

    Step Seven : If you have a conflict of interest, does the "public generally" exception apply?

    Now that you have determined that you will have a conflict of interest for a particular decision, you should see if the exceptions in Step 7 and Step 8 permit you to participate anyway. Not all conflicts of interest prevent you from lawfully taking part in the government decision at hand. Even if you otherwise have a conflict of interest, you are not disqualified from the decision if the "public generally" exception applies.

    This exception exists because you are less likely to be biased by a financial impact when a significant part of the community has economic interests that are substantially likely to feel essentially the same impact from a governmental decision that your economic interests are likely to feel. If you can show that a significant segment of your jurisdiction has an economic interest that feels a financial impact which is substantially similar to the impact on your economic interest, then the exception applies.

    The "public generally" exception must be considered with care. You may not just assume that it applies. There are specific rules for identifying the specific segments of the general population with which you may compare your economic interest, and specific rules for deciding whether the financial impact is substantially similar. Again, contact your agency counsel, the FPPC and the specific rules for advice and details. The regulations outlining the steps to apply the "public generally" exception can be found on the FPPC website at http://www.fppc.ca.gov under regulations 18707-18707.10.

    Are you required to participate?

    Step Eight : Even if you have a disqualifying conflict of interest, is your participation legally required?

    In certain rare circumstances, you may be called upon to take part in a decision despite the fact that you have a disqualifying conflict of interest. This "legally required participation" rule applies only in certain very specific circumstances in which your government agency would be paralyzed, unable to act. You are most strongly encouraged to seek advice from your agency legal counsel or the FPPC before you act under this rule.

    Conclusion

    Generally speaking, here are the keys to meeting your obligations under the Political Reform Act's conflict-of-interest laws:

    Know the purpose of the law, which is to prevent biases, actual and apparent, which result from the financial interests of the decision-makers.

    Learn to spot potential trouble early. Understand which of your economic interests could give rise to a conflict of interest.

    Understand the "big picture" of the rules. For example, know why the rules distinguish between directly and indirectly involved interests, and why the public generally exception exists.

    Realize the importance of the facts. Deciding whether you have a disqualifying conflict of interest depends just as much , if not more , on the facts of your particular situation as it does on the law.

    Don't try to memorize all of the specific conflict-of-interest rules. The rules are complex, and the penalties for violating them are significant. Learn to understand the "big picture." You'll then be able to look up or ask about the particular rules you need to apply to any given case.

    Don't be afraid to ask for advice. It is available from your agency's legal counsel and from the FPPC.

    An important note'

    You should not rely solely on this booklet to ensure compliance with the Political Reform Act, but should also consult the Act and Commission regulations. The Political Reform Act is set forth at Cal. Gov. Code ??81000-91014, and the Fair Political Practices Commission regulations are contained in Title 2, Division 6 of the California Code of Regulations. Both the Act and regulations are available on the FPPC's web site, http://www.fppc.ca.gov. Persons with obligations under the Act or their authorized representatives are also encouraged to call the FPPC toll-free advice line " 1-866-ASK-FPPC " as far in advance as possible.

    How to Contact Us:

    Mail:
    Fair Political Practices Commission
    428 J Street, Suite 620
    Sacramento, CA 95814

    Website:
    www.fppc.ca.gov

    Telephone:

    Toll-free advice line: 1-866-ASK-FPPC(1-866-275-3772)

    Regular line: 1-916-322-5660

    Enforcement hot-line: 1-800-561-1861

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  11. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    This is for my ex-councilman friend, Read it an weep. This is from the Government Code

    Source: http://www.fppc.ca.gov/Act/2011Act.pdf

    They ask for Campaign Donations..... They don't call them donation for fun.

    § 87103. Financial Interest.
    A public official has a financial interest in a decision within the meaning of Section 87100 if it is reasonably foreseeable that the decision will have a material financial effect, distinguishable from its effect on the public generally, on the official, a member of his or her immediate family, or on any of the following:
    (a) Any business entity in which the public official has a direct or indirect investment worth two thousand dollars ($2,000) or more.
    (b) Any real property in which the public official has a direct or indirect interest worth two thousand dollars ($2,000) or more.
    (c) Any source of income, except gifts or loans by a commercial lending institution made in the regular course of business on terms available to the public without regard to official status, aggregating five hundred dollars ($500) or more in value provided or promised to, received by, the public official within 12 months prior to the time when the decision is made.
    (d) Any business entity in which the public official is a director, officer, partner, trustee, employee, or holds any position of management.

    (e) Any donor of, or any intermediary or agent for a donor of, a gift or gifts aggregating two hundred fifty dollars ($250) or more in value provided to,received by, or promised to the public official within 12 months prior to the time when the decision is made. The amount of the value of gifts specified by this subdivision shall be adjusted biennially by the Commission to equal the same amount determined by the Commission pursuant to subdivision (f) of Section 89503.

    (now $420.00)
    For purposes of this section, indirect investment or interest means any investment or interest owned by the spouse or dependent child of a public official, by an agent on behalf of a public official, or by a business § 87103. entity or trust in which the official, the official’s agents, spouse, and dependent children own directly, indirectly, or beneficially a 10-percent interest or greater.

    History: Amended by Stats. 1979, Ch. 686; amended by Stats.
    1980, Ch. 183; amended by Stats. 1984, Ch. 931; amended by Stats.
    1985, Ch. 611; amended by Stats. 1994, Ch. 386; amended by Stats.
    1997, Ch. 455, effective September 24, 1997; amended by Stats.
    2000, Ch. 130.
    References at the time of publication (see page 3):
    Regulations: 2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18229
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18229.1
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18232
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18700
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18702.5
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18703
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18703.1
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18703.2
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18703.3
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18703.4
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18703.5
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18704
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18704.1
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18704.2
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18704.5
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18705
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18705.1
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18705.2
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18705.3
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18705.4
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18705.5
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18706
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707.1
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707.2
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707.4
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707.5
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707.6
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707.7
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707.9
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18707.10
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18709
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18730
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18940
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18940.2
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18941
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18942
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18942.1
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18943
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18944.2
    2 Cal. Code of Regs. Section 18945
    Opinions:

    In re Roberts (2004) 17 FPPC Ops. 9
    In re Hanko (2002) 16 FPPC Ops. 1
    In re Galligan (2000) 14 FPPC Ops. 1
    In re Legan (1985) 9 FPPC Ops. 1
    In re Nord (1983) 8 FPPC Ops. 6
    In re Ferraro (1978) 4 FPPC Ops. 62
    In re Callanan, Sands and Hill (1978) 4 FPPC
    Ops. 33
    In re Brown (1978) 4 FPPC Ops. 19
    In re Hopkins (1977) 3 FPPC Ops. 107
    In re Gillmor (1977) 3 FPPC Ops. 38
    In re Moore (1977) 3 FPPC Ops. 33
    In re Thomas (1977) 3 FPPC Ops. 30
    In re Sherwood (1976) 2 FPPC Ops. 168
    In re Sankey (1976) 2 FPPC Ops. 157
    In re Owen (1976) 2 FPPC Ops. 77
    In re Thorner (1975) 1 FPPC Ops. 198
    In re Biondo (1975) 1 FPPC Ops. 54
    In re Presley (1975) 1 FPPC Ops. 39

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    • Steve Spear Steve Spear says:

      Hmmmm....

      I guess the FPPC, the Courts, and the District Attroney all seem to have very specific definitions in mind when using certain words. These definitions are not the same as used by those in this discussion. That is perhaps where the problem generates from.

      A "gift" is not a "campaign donation" and neither a "gift" or a "campaign donation" are a "bribe".

      We are talking apples, oranges, and peaches here and when all three of those are mixed together one does not even end up with a useful fruit salad or juice.

      As Mark has pointed out there are "exceptions" to the rules you speak of. People may not like those exceptions but they currently exist.

      Now if an individual made a $10,000.00 "gift" to a councilmember then there is a code to address that point. But what if it was not a "gift" but rather a normally procurred "loan" then the "gift" provisions do not apply. Or to make it even more interesting how about it was a $10,000.00 "campaign contribution" that was nether a "loan" or a "gift" and was properly reported on the appropriate campaign finance forms?

      The actual legality of these various options is one matter however I feel that some in this discussion are more interested in the perception of the matter and that is a whole different ball game.

      So far I side with Mr. Nuaimi because what he is saying is exactly what I had to deal with for 8 years and two campaign cycles and his statements here are supported by those experiences.

      I too would direct anyone who thinks that some form of illegality is transpiring to contact the San Bernardino County District Attorny's Public Integrity Unit in the 303 Building in Downtown San Bernardino at Third and Arrowhead.

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      • Dan OBrien Dan O'Brien says:

        The law speaks of no apples or oranges.

        The first rule is are you a "Public Official" it does not differentiate between an elected or appointed and you or NUiami have not given one legal example of such a preposterous assertion. Show me in the law. Show me case law. Show me anything to support that their is anything but one "Public Official" category under the FPPC.

        Your belief that, A “gift” is not a “campaign donation” .... is not supported in law. You or Nuaimi have not provided a single legal opinion to suggest that a campaign donor is not gifting money to the candidate in hopes he or she wins. The is absurd.

        The other assumption that neither a “gift” or a “campaign donation” are a “bribe”, is equally wrong. The Campaign Finance Laws were put in to place precisely because it was felt that the power of money could buy a politician. What you are saying in effect is that money can't buy a vote. The Legislature, the FPPC, the voter and most people with common scene would respectfully disagree.

        We have Romos hot on the trail of at least two ex supervisors concerning similar actions. So I agree, if I was a resident of Yucca I would ask the DA to look into it.

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  12. Cindy Melland loans $10,000.00 to Isaac Hagerman-(Source: Hagerman Form 700 2011)

    "§ 87103. Financial Interest.

    A public official has a financial interest in a decision within the meaning of Section 87100 if it is reasonably foreseeable that the decision will have a material financial effect, distinguishable from its effect on the public generally, on the official, a member of his or her immediate family, or on any of the following:

    c) Any source of income, except gifts or loans by a commercial lending institution made in the regular course of business on terms available to the public without regard to official status, aggregating five hundred dollars ($500) or more in value provided or promised to, received by, the public official within 12 months prior to the time when the decision is made."

    Town Councilman Isaac Hagerman has voted on the Brehm Youth Park. Besides the above loan, I am certain he received campaign donations from the Melland( maiden name:Brehm)family.

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  13. Branson Hunter Branson Hunter says:

    This debate desperately needs to be defined. All this talk about 'apples' and 'orange' is pretty much where this discussion has landed. Going back to the genesis of the debate: Mark Nuaimi wrote, as follows:

    "Elected officials are not required to recuse themselves from items involving campaign contributions."

    Where is the specific and exact law to support this? Let me know and we'll take a look at the intent of the legislative bill.

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  14. Steve Spear Steve Spear says:

    Hi Branson,

    Here it is:

    "Elected state officers, judges, and members of local government agencies who are directly elected by the voters (e.g., board of supervisors, city council, school board) are exempt from Section 84308 when they are acting as members of the agency to which they are elected."

    The whole link is:

    http://www.fppc.ca.gov/index.php?id=6

    The section dealing with this issue is at the bottom.

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  15. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    And here is why my argument is valid.

    HEALTH AND SAFETY CODE
    SECTION 33200-33206

    (Redevelopment Law, Heath and Safety Code DIVISION 24. COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND HOUSING
    PART 1. COMMUNITY REDEVELOPMENT LAW CHAPTER 3. OTHER ENTITIES UNDERTAKING OR ASSISTING REDEVELOPMENT

    33200. (a) As an alternative to the appointment of five members of
    the agency, the legislative body may, at the time of the adoption of
    an ordinance pursuant to Section 33101 or 33140 of this part, or at
    any time thereafter by adoption of an ordinance, declare itself to be
    the agency; in which case, all the rights, powers, duties,
    privileges and immunities, vested by this part in an agency, except
    as otherwise provided in this article, shall be vested in the
    legislative body of the community.
    If a member of the legislative
    body of a city or county does not wish to serve on the agency, the
    members may so notify the legislative body of the city or county, and
    the legislative body of the city or county shall appoint a
    replacement who is an elector of the city or county to serve out the
    term of the replaced member.

    In the case of Yucca Valley the Council serves both as an elected official and an appointed member of the redevelopment agency. As an appointed member of the Redevelopment Agency, Council members are required to recuse themselves when affected by Campaign donations. And really all bull shit aside that is what we are talking about here isn't it?

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  16. Steve Spear Steve Spear says:

    At this point I have no idea what is being talked about. I now can count Oranges - Gifts, Apples - Bribes, Peaches - Campaign Donations, and finally Pears - loans.

    Have fun guys!

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  17. Mark Nuaimi Mark Nuaimi says:

    Well I hate to do this one more time ... but in response to Dan's assertion that TYV Councilmembers must recuse themselves as Redevelopment Agency members if there are campaign contributions involved, I offer the following from the FPPC website:

    http://www.fppc.ca.gov/index.php?id=103

    What Agencies Are Not Covered?

    Section 84308 expressly exempts from its coverage the following agencies:

    •the judicial branch
    •the Legislature
    •the Board of Equalization(2)
    •constitutional officers
    •local agencies whose members are elected by the voters (e.g., city councils and county boards of supervisors)

    The exemption for these agencies extends to committees of the agencies, if only members of the governing body of the agency are on the committee. It also applies when the governing body, in its entirety, sits as the governing body of another agency (e.g., a board of supervisors designates itself as the redevelopment agency for the county). In these cases, the officers are not appointed to the other agency. However, as stated above, if a member of an exempt agency also serves as an appointed member of another, non-exempt agency, the prohibitions of section 84308 do apply.

    Section 84308 applies to city councilmembers who also serve as members of the City of Brea Redevelopment Agency, unless the redevelopment agency is made up of the city council in its entirety without any other members. (Markman I-94-223.)

    In determining whether a board or commission is exempt for purposes of Section 84308, the focus should be on the actual make-up of the board or commission. For instance, the governing board of a sanitation district that may consist of both elected and appointed members, but which, in fact, consists solely of members of the board of supervisors, is exempt under section 84308. (Dixon A-96-203.)

    **********************

    So if the RDA is made up entirely of the elected Town Council, they are not required to recuse themselves.

    Thanks to Steve S, for chiming in on this matter. It's a welcome input from someone who has actually served as an elected official under the conflict of interest rules.

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  18. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    Ok.... if I get some time today... I am going to call the FPPC and get guidance.

    To suggest the because you are elected you can legally be swayed by campaign contributions and it is legal, just does not sound right to me. I think both of you have drank the kool-aid. If it is true then we have built in corruption in city government.

    And while Steve is one of my very best friends, and I'd fall on a grenade for him, he is wrong about half the time.:-) And all this fruit talk by him is getting me hungry for a salad.

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  19. Richard Myers richard says:

    If it is true then we have built in corruption in city government.

    of course it is,,,,,corrupt,,,it is the very nature of 99.9% of those who run for office

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  20. Terri says:

    I do not care for the entire Hagerman clan......they have ulterior motives and think they are above everyone......so opposite of what true Christianity is suppose to be all about. They are all connected out into the community like poisoned tentacles............

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  21. Terri says:

    This is WHY I HATE POLITICS AND POLITICIANS OF ANY KIND.......always room for corruption and hidden agendas.........QUESTION AUTHORITY

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  22. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    Steve tells me to let it go..... but this story was just so damned interesting.

    Please Read:

    EXHIBIT 1 INTRODUCTION Respondent Dennis Hansberger has been a Supervisor for the County of ... San Bernardino Board of Supervisors from 1972 to 1980. http://www.fppc.ca.gov/Agendas/01-06/03-663exh.pdf#search=%22Dennis%20Hansberger%22

    STIPULATION, DECISION and 13 DENNIS HANSBERGER,) ORDER) 14 Respondent ... Krausse, Executive Director of the Fair Political Practices Commission, and 20 Respondent Dennis Hansberger. http://www.fppc.ca.gov/Agendas/01-06/03-663stip.pdf#search=%22Dennis%20Hansberger%22

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  23. Steve Spear Steve Spear says:

    And this goes to prove exactly what Mr. Nuaimi and I have been saying all along!

    What part of "appointed" is being lost in the translation is beyond me. The two "Agencies" cited were not the BOS but were outside agencies and this is exactly what Mr. Nuaimi has been trying to tell this Blog.

    Lets try this on for size.

    I was offered a $500.00 campaign contribution from Waste Management when I ran for office the second time. Now Waste Management was already the refuse provider for 29 and they wanted to keep it that way. They also knew that it was I that ran the first time for a modern day trash system. It was in their best interest to keep me around one would say.

    Would it have been a violation of any law to have accepted that $500.00 and then later on in the year as an elected official on the city council vote to continue/modify their contract with the city?

    Also, as an appointed member of the regional waste committe that was comprised of elected officials from various cities in the region would I have had to recuse myself at a vote in regards to Waste Management becoming the sole provider of refuse collection for the region in light of the $500.00 campaign contribution?

    I look forward to you analysis.

    P. S.

    I withdraw the request for analysis in fear of perhaps being provided a 5th fruit to add to the very toxic cocktail we have been making.

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