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Merl Abel Caught in Political Web: Goes Back on his Word

by Margo Sturges/Yucca Valley, Ca.,- I am concerned with the sparse turnout predicted by many for the upcoming November election. Nine candidates tossed their hats entering the race for three seats on the Yucca Valley Town Council.

Appointed Councilman, Merl Abel, started his campaign back in May raising funds after declaring he would NOT run for office. His recent “tent event” at his real estate office worked out well to promote his business with a turnout of fellow realtors. This small gathering of attendees enjoyed his ice cream social as Abel flitted around in his red shirt bashing two other candidates running for town council. Abel violated his own signed pledge to conduct his campaign abiding by the rules of ethics he signed when he pulled his papers. He must feel those rules do not apply to him.

Voter apathy, or disgust, will allow those candidates with the most money to purchase the most radio airtime and send out the most mailers to prevail. The candidates receive large campaign donations to take hold of the reins of government. Some elected officials are good people…gone bad.

Endorsements come and go raising eyebrows for voters to question why, if only for a brief moment. These endorsements and letters to the Editor are orchestrated by public relations firms as hired guns to sway public opinion.

Take for example the “overwhelming endorsements of the Yucca Valley Town Council” for the defeated Measure U, a 1% General Fund sales tax for 30 years that could not be dedicated or earmarked. Each council member personally contributing large amounts of money towards the YesOnMeasureU political action committee to raise $34,000 in addition to the $199,000 of public funds they authorized to spend before Councilman Bob Leone was elected to the dais to stop the madness. Document>460_doc

The chamber stepped into the political arena to promote the worse sales tax with only 12% of the members responding to their in-house survey. In return, these same Yucca Valley Council members endorsed a clueless Chamber candidate that could not even pick up one precinct!

Yucca Valley appointed councilman, Merl Abel, posted his shock and dismay the citizens did not heed his endorsements. His praise of integrity and good character of his fellow church member proved otherwise.

Voters-remember this: Abel was on board to give the ex-Town Manager Mark Nuaimi, a sweet 3 year employment contract and bonuses while cutting quality of life community programs. Five months later, Abel was in support of the severance package of $126,666.00 to fire the disgraced Nuaimi and declared he was fed up.

Having declared he would NOT seek re-election, Abel went back on his word to declare he would run again.

What a disappointment he could not keep his word…he has become entangled in politics as a willing participant.

 

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Margo Sturges

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Sturges has posted 1,000 articles on Cactus Thorns covering Yucca Valley, Twentynine Palms, Joshua Tree and San Bernardino County agency meetings. www.MargoSturges.com
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“In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”- George Orwell

3 Responses to Merl Abel Caught in Political Web: Goes Back on his Word

  1. Ed Montgomery

    Ed Montgomery

    May 28, 2014 at 6:15 am

    Merl Abel has to be one of the worst town Council persons of ever seen.
    He is no good for the town of Yucca Valley, and he’s also no good for the citizens of this community, I find him to be a high roller and a big waste of taxpayers money, he’s wasted money on measure U, the senior housing project, paying the former town manager big money, then firing him, and giving him almost $130,000 of our tax dollars. Merl Abel, is the problem not the solution! I say to everybody, don’t vote for Merl Abel, he is bad for everybody.

  2. Robert Nelson

    Robert Nelson

    May 28, 2014 at 10:53 am

    I suspect that Cole Burr and BURRTEC may be wanting to keep their hold on the Council after handing over a huge amount of money Nuaimi and the Council members for their YES ON MEASURE U folly and for the large contribution to the COOK / MAYES campaigns. What is BURRTEC expecting in return for those contributions to the Nuaimi/Cook/Mayes/Rowe clique?

    Dawn Rowe told me a while back that BURRTEC and the Council are looking at changing BURRTEC’S contract … to approve a new contract that puts your garbage collection bill on your tax bill. All property owners will be getting billed that way … whether or not they use BURRTEC’S services. That’s likely going to give BURRTEC a nice increase in revenue.

  3. Margo Sturges

    Margo Sturges

    May 28, 2014 at 12:09 pm

    Abel wants to spend Town reserves, yet is clueless to the exact amount due to the IOU’s placed in that “Fund Summary” or “Fund Statement” it’s now called to AVOID using the word “Reserves.” IOU’s he voted to be placed there.

    Merl Abel was appointed to the Town Council by four Sky Harbor neighbors, three attending the same church. Abel never attended any council meetings prior to being seated on the dais and his other positions he were also appointments.

    Appointed Merl Abel voted and supported Measure U and when that failed, he voted to place another tax measure on the ballot.

    Abel voted to exceed the budget for the animal shelter and increased costs for the dog park. He voted to place an IOU into the Town’s reserves for the Senior Housing shortage.

    Abel foolishly voted for the increased financial commitment for the Senior Housing fiasco saying, “It’s a great way to leverage our dollars.”

    He voted to give Nuaimi a 3 year bonus contract just before cutting funds to the community swimming pool program, Museum and Concerts in the Park as punishment for not passing Measure U.

    Abel authorized the brutal surprise firings of several beloved employees three days before Easter Sunday. These family members had plans to attend the Town Easter egg hunt with their small children and grandchildren.

    As the Mayor of Yucca Valley, a school teacher with a family member employed at a local Christian School, I notified Abel of the serious alleged acts of misconduct by a basketball coach. He assured me he would look into the matter and then said, “Margo you should NOT contact me directly anymore because I am the Mayor now and it would appear you are taking advantage of our acquaintance.” (Abel informed the protestor to file a police report and he was not subject to mandatory reporting as a school teacher based on the circumstances of how the allegations were brought to his attention.)

    Merl Abel then lied to me when he was trying to protect this school. To keep the ex-school teacher from protesting along the road in front of a church, construction barriers were placed along the road to block her from parking her car. Abel told me they were placed there for “a traffic study in conjunction with the dog park construction.” When I requested a copy of the “traffic study” through public Records Request, Deputy Town Manager Shane Stueckle informed me there were NO traffic studies.

    Merl Abel lied when he said he would not seek another term on the Town Council…he went back on his word. He should have been included as the third target of the Recall and definitely should not be elected to do more damage to our Town.

    No more Merl Abel on the Council…Step down now Merl if you really care about our community.

    Photos, links and council minutes to come tracking Abel’s horrible voting record and disgusting elitist attitude instilled by his mentor, the unpopular/immoral ex-Town Manager…fired…Mark Nuaimi.

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