Making headway in the Senate to protect the misuse of our tax dollars by “non-profit organizations” receiving 20% government funds , SB 594 will cease the political involvement by Chambers of Commerce and other associations. This bill with broad language vastly limits the ability of any nonprofit organization that receives any public funding from a local government from participating in state and local ballot campaigns. A fine of up to $10,000 per each violation will be levied on the organizations endorsing, or opposing, elections, recalls or candidates and subjecting these organizations to audits by the Attorney General for their participation in politics. sb_594_bill_20130821_amended_asm_v95
The Yucca Valley Chamber of Commerce has recently entered into the arena of politics through the encouragement of the now defunct ex-town manager/politician, Mark Nuaimi, misusing public funds to endorse the failed General Fund tax, Measure U. The Chamber Board recently voted to endorse their position placing a political website within their chamber website addressing the recall of Councilmen George Huntington and Robert Lombardo.
This is website cannot be considered to be “educational to provide an accurate impartial and fair presentation of the facts to aid the electorate in reaching an informed decision.” The Yucca Valley Chamber of Commerce receives free rent in a town building, waiver of rental fees of Town Community facilities and $15-$25,000 “marketing stipend” per year of tax payer dollars. The Chamber’s recent request to use the Community room on a Sunday will cost the tax payers excess fees in overtime compensation by town staff for their Gourd Festival fund raiser.
The League of California Cities is opposing this bill stating,
SB 594 silences the voice of trusted organizations and would create an un-level playing field on important public policy issues.SB 594 is a solution in search of a problem. Public funds cannot be and are not used in political campaigns. California already has strong laws on the books that prohibit the use of public funds in political campaigns, and the FPPC has jurisdiction to ensure compliance. These organizations never use public funds for political campaigns.
The organizations impacted include the California State Sheriffs’ Association, the California Fire Chiefs Association, the California Police Chiefs Association, the California School Boards Association, Community College League of California, California State Association of Counties, League of California Cities, Association of California School Administrators, local chambers of commerce and thousands of others.
These organizations should not be involved in politics nor using public resources to support/oppose state and local ballot campaigns. SB594 spells out “Public resources” as property or asset owned by local agency, including but not limited to cash, land, buildings, facilities, funds, equipment, supplies, telephones, computers, vehicles and local government compensated time that is provided to a nonprofit organization.
This bill would curtail outside money pouring into local issues such as the $39,000 raised for the Yes on Measure U campaign of which $2,000 was donated by the Firefighters Local 935 from Fontana. YES_Measure_U_FINAL_36pgs
Please support this bill and stop the wasting of our tax dollars used by these agencies to support their political agenda under the guise of “sound advice of these associations on matters that impact their communities”…yeah sure.
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