Archive for April 9th, 2010

InlandPolitics: Next up, the Cardoza trial

Now that the trial of Rancho Cucamonga City Councilman Rex Gutierrez has been continued to June 1st, focus now shifts to a lesser publicized case with even greater potential to inflict major damage to the professional and political career of San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos.

The trial in question involves former District Attorney Investigator Christopher Cardoza.

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As expected, a Superior Court Judge agreed with San Bernardino County prosecutors to delay the trial of Rancho Cucamonga City Councilman Rex Gutierrez this morning.

The trial, which was scheduled to commence Monday morning, addresses charges against Gutierrez alleging time card fraud stemming from Gutierrez’ tenure with the San Bernardino County Assessor’s Office under Bill Postmus.

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A source familiar with last years Grand Jury proceedings focusing on the investigation into the Colonies Settlement is alluding that two more names were in play during the proceedings.

Apparently, on the wall of the Grand Jury room where testimony was being taken were enlarged Department of Motor Vehicles photographs of seven individuals.

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InlandPolitics: Ramos payments to private law firm climbing

Ramos

Records filed with the San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters by District Attorney Mike Ramos reveals the two-term prosecutor has paid almost $10,000 in campaign funds to a private law firm he retained to deal with allegations made by aformer mistress who works in his department.

Records show that between January 1, 2010 and March 17, 2010, Ramos paid the sum of $1,560.00 to the law firm of Gresham, Savage, Nolan, and Tilden.

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iePolitics: The Uffer Questions

Has anyone read pages 129-137 of the Mark Uffer Claim Against the County?  They can be found here:  Uffer-Document

Pages 129-137 consist of the questions Mark Uffer proposed the Grand Jury ask others, including Supervisor Paul Biane and Chief of Staff Mark Kirk.  Those questions are quite revealing.  The question is, “Are they legitimate?”

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RivPE: Senate election Tuesday

11:45 PM PDT on Thursday, April 8, 2010

By JIM MILLER
Sacramento Bureau

SACRAMENTO – In an election no one could have predicted last summer, voters will go to the polls Tuesday in a special ballot to choose a representative for Riverside County’s 37th Senate District.

John Benoit won the seat in November 2008. Last August, Benoit announced that he was seeking an appointment to the Riverside County Board of Supervisors following the resignation of Roy Wilson, who died days later.

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11:45 PM PDT on Thursday, April 8, 2010

By JIM MILLER
Sacramento Bureau

SACRAMENTO – A candidate who wears glasses, visits the dentist, enjoys tribal casinos and is tight with prison guards and firefighters might be sitting pretty these days in Riverside County’s 37th Senate District.

Dentists, optometrists and other special interests have dumped $900,000 into the campaign leading up to next week’s Senate special election, filling voters’ mailboxes and rolling out television ads.

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VoiceofOCBlog: Moorlach Says Ellis Mischaracterized Meeting

David Ellis

Posted: Thursday, April 8, 2010 4:30 pm | Updated: 9:15 pm, Thu Apr 8, 2010.

Moorlach Says Ellis Mischaracterized Meeting|

Supervisor remembers meeting with Ellis and others about long-term vision for fairgrounds but not specifically about privatization plans.

County Supervisor John Moorlach this morning sent out his email blast commenting on our fair situation story. In it, Moorlach disputes Fair Board member Dave Ellis’ remarks that he was privy to the details about the fair foundation’s plan early on.

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VoiceofOCBlog: The Deal that Keeps Getting Worse

Posted: Wednesday, April 7, 2010 9:27 pm | Updated: 9:15 pm, Thu Apr 8, 2010.

NORBERTO SANTANA, JR.

Thursday, April 8, 2010 |

Virtually every local political leader now agrees that the plan cooked up by a group of Orange County fair board members to privatize the fairgrounds last year was horribly conceived and executed.

There is less agreement, however, on how the deal shot up the political ladder and then went so bad, so fast. Instead there is a lot of high-level finger pointing and stories that don’t completely add up.

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10:00 PM PDT on Thursday, April 8, 2010

By RICHARD K. DE ATLEY
The Press-Enterprise

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Thursday made three appointments to fill vacancies created by retired judges in San Bernardino County.

The judgeships went to:

Lorenzo R. Balderrama, 57, of Redlands. He served as a deputy district attorney for San Bernardino County since 1982. Balderrama received his law degree from Western State University College of Law and his bachelor of arts degree from Harvard University. Balderrama, a Democrat, replaces Judge John P. Wade.

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April 08, 2010 – 5:44 PM
Brooke Edwards

VICTORVILLE • By not paying a $142,000 bill, the city attorney is warning that Victorville has left itself open to a potential breach of contract lawsuit from Inland Energy, the Newport Beach-based developer that’s partnered with the city for a number of large-scale projects over the last several years.

While Inland denies it intends to initiate a suit, a company spokesman said they can’t control what action their unpaid subcontractors might take.

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Stacia Glenn, Staff Writer
Posted: 04/08/2010 05:46:03 PM PDT

A candidate for sheriff criticized the Sheriff’s Department on Thursday and demanded a grand jury investigation, saying internal misconduct has been swept under the rug.

Deputy Mark Averbeck claimed high-ranking officials have been falsifying certifications that netted them extra pay.

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FinancialTimes: Oil could give kiss of death to recovery

By Gregory Meyer and Michael Mackenzie in New York

Published: April 8 2010 18:51 | Last updated: April 8 2010 18:51

This week oil climbed to $87 a barrel, its highest level since October 2008 and prompted concerns that triple-digit crude was once again in the offing.

This was after a period of eight months when oil traded between $70 and $80, a narrow band that pleased oil producers without hurting consumers too much.

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Brown

The commercial, labeled an issue ad, accuses Brown of decades of overspending. It was taken off the air after four members of the chamber’s board complained to the organization’s chief.

By Anthony York and Michael Rothfeld

April 9, 2010

Reporting from Sacramento

The California Chamber of Commerce on Thursday said it would stop airing an ad attacking Jerry Brown amid objections from members of the organization, some of whom received calls from Brown and his wife demanding that the spot be removed.

The commercial, which the chamber labeled an “issue” advertisement, expresses alarm over runaway spending but mostly focuses on attacking Brown, the presumed Democratic nominee for governor, accusing him of decades of overspending.

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By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com The Sacramento Bee
Published: Friday, Apr. 9, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A

California’s roller-coaster economy – a boom and a bust each decade – has a counterpart in its topsy-turvy politics.

Every decade or so, the state’s voters upset the conventional wisdom.

It happened 32 years ago when voters ignored opposition from the state’s political leaders and enacted anti-tax Proposition 13.

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LATimes: Villaraigosa backs off on proposed furloughs

City revenues are up more than expected, so L.A. ‘might not be out of cash after all,’ the mayor says. His plan for two furlough days a week was expected to spark a protracted fight.

By Maeve Reston

April 9, 2010

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has backed away from his call to shut down some city departments two days a week, using positive news about the city’s budget crisis to downplay a threat that had become increasingly difficult to sustain.

“To all of our surprise, we’ve gotten an increase in revenues of $30 million more from property tax than we expected,” Villaraigosa said Thursday, two days after announcing the move might be necessary as soon as Monday to prevent the city from running out of money.

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The higher tax collections could be a sign that the state economy may be starting to recover, but finance officials warn that any rebound is expected to be slow.

By Shane Goldmacher

April 9, 2010

Reporting from Sacramento

For the fourth straight month, California has collected more in taxes than expected, a sign that the state economy may be starting to recover.

But finance officials warned that any rebound is expected to be slow, and the revenue boon may prove less helpful at shrinking California’s deficit than many in Sacramento hope.

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