San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District board member Gil Navarro (File photo).

By Jeff Horseman | jhorseman@scng.com | The Press-Enterprise
April 20, 2018 at 7:16 pm

California’s campaign finance watchdog agency has fined an Inland water district official $36,500 for multiple infractions, including failing to close a legal defense fund tied to his fight to serve on two elected bodies at the same time.

The Fair Political Practices Commission unanimously approved the fines on Gil Navarro at its Thursday, April 19 meeting. The Sacramento-based commission delayed imposing the fines last month.

Navarro serves on the San Bernardino Valley Water Municipal Water District board. According to commission spokesman Jay Wierenga, the commission’s chief of enforcement reported hearing from Navarro that he didn’t want to pay a fine and would file the required paperwork.

But Navarro never did file that paperwork, and commissioners imposed a “default decision,” Wierenga said. The state can impose property liens and take other steps to collect the money from Navarro, but there’s no guarantee anything will be recovered, Wierenga added.

Reached by telephone Thursday, Navarro said he plans to turn in paperwork to the commission on Monday pertaining to his legal defense fund and Assembly campaign committee.

“The FPPC serves the purpose of (providing) checks and balances,” he said. “They’re doing their job and in that respect, they’re doing what they’re supposed to do. I don’t have a problem with that. That’s something I have to settle up with and I intend do that.”

A state Assembly candidate in 2010 and 2014, Navarro won election to the water district board in 2012 while still a member of the San Bernardino County school board.

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