Tag Archive for FlashReport

The Greenmail is Now Public: Union CEQA Extortion of San Diego Convention Center Featured on www.FlashReport.org

This morning’s edition of www.FlashReport.org published my article about what REALLY happened at the September 19, 2012 meeting of the Board of Port Commissioners for the United Port of San Diego. Read it here:

UNION OFFICIALS INTIMIDATE SAN DIEGO CIVIC LEADERS: Threaten to Use the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to Block the San Diego Convention Center Expansionwww.FlashReport.org – September 20, 2012

My message to San Diego’s business and political leaders: someone has to be a courageous leader in your town and organize a broad coalition to fight back publicly against this relentless exploitation of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) by your local labor union officials and their lawyers. I didn’t see ONE true hero at that meeting of the Port Commissioners yesterday – ironic considering how the room was full of congratulatory adulation. Even your local news media dances around the real issue, leaving taxpayers confused about what’s going on at their government. How can you give recognition and respect to these union officials as “community leaders” even as they threaten to hold up your convention center expansion in order to extract labor agreements? Expose the union greenmail and fight it!

Union CEQA Documents Submitted to Port of San Diego - Convention Center Expansion

Document Dump: a lawyer for labor unions submitted hundreds of pages of CEQA objections at the very last minute against the proposed San Diego Convention Center expansion. Unions are demanding that construction contractors sign a Project Labor Agreement as a condition of working on the project. That’s the California Environmental Quality Act in action!

Bakersfield and Kern County Experience Economic Growth and Job Creation

UPDATE: Here’s a December 29, 2012 Associated Press article Din of Hammers, Oil Wells Signal Bakersfield Boom. Excerpts from the article:

Bakersfield and surrounding Kern County find themselves in lofty positions on key national lists measuring economic vitality: No. 1 metro area for long-term private sector job growth, No. 1 county for construction gains and No. 1 large metro area for annual economic growth.

Cheap land, affordable housing, proximity to Los Angeles, a location that’s within a three-hour drive of 90 percent of the state’s population, and a planning department that doesn’t throw up roadblocks are driving the region’s economic revolution, business leaders say.


The Los Angeles Times had a September 10, 2012 article reporting that Many Signs Point to a Bakersfield Boom. It opens with the following:

This mid-size city has become the surprise star of the Central Valley.

The state’s economic recovery has largely been concentrated on the coast, leaving behind much of the hard-hit San Joaquin Valley. But Bakersfield, perhaps best known for oil, agriculture and country music, has reclaimed an old title: boomtown.

Bakersfield has been adding population and jobs at a brisk pace and is a few thousand jobs from matching its peak employment level of five years ago. A price-fueled energy bonanza, low corporate operating costs and an advantageous location are contributing to the area’s good fortune.

Employment has grown across many sectors, including manufacturing. Even construction, which suffered mightily statewide during the housing bust, has strengthened. And unlike many struggling municipalities, in Kern County officials have recommended a budget increase that would allow hiring of more than 150 people.

Signs of growth are obvious.

Actually, it isn’t surprising that Bakersfield and Kern County are prospering. Kern County’s economic activity focuses on commodities, such as oil, natural gas, mineral mining, agriculture, and energy production. The states of North Dakota and Alaska are prospering for the same reason.

Of course, economic prosperity attracts parasites, such as state legislators from coastal cities who want to tax Kern County’s commodities and send the money to the University of California at Berkeley. (See my May 22, 2011 article in www.FlashReport.org entitled Culture Clash: The “Bakersfield Oil Field to Berkeley Sports Field Tax.”) Bakersfield’s business and political leaders also need to remain wary of the union political agenda that is so dominant in other parts of California.

I was disappointed to see that the Los Angeles Times article turns to Bakersfield union officials to report on the current status of the local construction industry, even though the region’s construction workers overwhelmingly do not belong to a union. The reporter should have contacted the Bakersfield-based Central California Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) to get the status of construction in the region. Any major construction projects in Kern County monopolized by unions have to bring in numerous union workers from outside the Bakersfield area.

Even worse, the article omits some important context in these two union references:

“We have work in the oil fields,” said Danny Kane, business manager for the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 428, based in downtown Bakersfield. “We have a lot of solar work. We have wind. We are just fortunate to have those opportunities in Kern County.”

John Spaulding, executive secretary of the Building Trades Council for Kern, Inyo and Mono Counties, said that although hiring has increased in the last year, larger and more long-term projects needed to get off the ground to see the recovery accelerate. Spaulding said he was looking forward to the start of construction on a hydrogen energy plant late next year, which is expected to be a multiyear project that would employ thousands. “I think it’s going to get better,” he said. “There’s some movement.”

Why are unions officials so confident about working on the proposed hydrogen energy plant and on proposed solar and wind projects in Kern County? It has nothing to do with union productivity, efficiency, or competitiveness – it has to do with their “greenmail.” A Sacramento-based group called California Unions for Reliable Energy (CURE) routinely uses the Bay Area law firm of Adams, Broadwell, Joseph & Cardozo to object to such projects using the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) until the developer agrees to sign a Project Labor Agreement giving unions monopoly control of the construction.

Through the legal work of Adams, Broadwell, Joseph & Cardozo, California Unions for Reliable Energy (CURE) intervened in the power plant licensing process at the California Energy Commission and won Project Labor Agreements in the late 1990s and early 2000s for natural gas power plants in Kern County, including the High Desert, Elk Hills, La Paloma, and Sunrise power plants. Six unions hired the same law firm and for two years (2007 and 2008) used CEQA to try to block the proposed (but later abandoned) expansion of the Big West/Flying J refinery in Bakersfield. And California Unions for Reliable Energy (CURE) is again active in Kern County, this finding environmental problems with solar and wind electrical generation facilities proposed by companies such as Recurrent Energy and getting a Project Labor Agreement for the proposed Hydrogen Energy California power plant.

Will unions and taxes slow this boomtown down? I wouldn’t be surprised.

Will California Voters Punish School Board Members in the November 6 Election for Requiring Construction Companies to Sign Project Labor Agreements with Unions?

Internal polling and the election results for recent ballot measures in the cities of San Diego, Chula Vista, Oceanside, and El Cajon and in the County of San Diego show that a majority of California voters want their local governments to solicit bids for construction contracts under fair and open competition. They don’t want their local governments to require their contractors to sign a Project Labor Agreement with unions for taxpayer-funded construction.

But elected officials keep voting for government-mandated Project Labor Agreements. Why?

  1. Local elected officials are fed by their political ambitions. In 1990, California voters imposed term limits on state legislators. This resulted in a constant churning of state legislators, with frequent opportunities for local elected officials to advance and extend their political careers with a few terms as full-time state legislators.
  2. In addition, in 2000 a bipartisan gerrymandering deal resulted in ten years of state legislative districts that were generally not competitive between the two major political parties. This means that local candidates with ambitions for higher office looked for initiatives to distinguish themselves from other candidates in the same political party. Getting the organizational and financial campaign support of unions often led to victory in a Democrat legislative primary.
  3. Finally, local elected officials often push for Project Labor Agreements assuming that voters will not make them accountable for their votes. At many local governments, elected officials feel they can vote for just about anything with impunity. No one is paying attention. There is no accountability.

It takes a solid commitment of local activists and organizations to send an effective message to voters that certain elected officials are putting special interest groups ahead of prudent fiscal management. As the serious campaigns get underway for the November 6, 2012 elections, there are several movements afoot in California to make local elected officials accountable to voters for using the government to give unions a monopoly on taxpayer-funded construction.

Riverside Community College District’s Elected Board of Trustees

For example, a September 6, 2012 article by Dave Everett of the Southern California Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractors in www.FlashReport.org (Cost Revealed for Takano & Medina Choosing Their Special Interest Friends Over Our Kids) reports on a plan to inform voters that two board members of the Riverside Community College District voted in March 2010 to require contractors to sign a Project Labor Agreement with the San Bernardino and Riverside County Building and Construction Trades Council. The labor agreement applied to subsequent construction funded by Measure C, a $350 bond measure approved by voters six years earlier.

That government-mandated Project Labor Agreement was approved in a 3-2 vote – board members Jose Medina, Mark Takano, and Mary Figueroa in support, and Janet Green and Virginia Blumenthal opposed. Before the vote at the March 16 meeting, the three board members in support of the Project Labor Agreement made defiant speeches in support of unionism and their vision of social justice – a vision that excluded half of the 300 construction workers packing the auditorium. As you might guess, this was about upcoming elections.

Democrat Jose Medina ran for California State Assembly in 2010 and lost to the Republican incumbent. He has left the community college board and is again running for California State Assembly, in the open District 61 seat. Medina is endorsed by numerous labor unions.

Democrat Mark Takano is running for the open 41st Congressional District seat against Riverside County Supervisor and Republican John Tavaglione. The Riverside Press-Enterprise endorsed Tavaglione in the June 2012 primary and criticized Takano’s vote for the Project Labor Agreement in a May 2, 2010 editorial (INLAND: 1 for Congress):

Mark Takano, the other well-known candidate in this race, has a long tenure on the Riverside Community College District board. But Takano’s record and approach are more partisan and less collaborative than Tavaglione’s. And Takano in 2010 was one of three college board trustees who socked area taxpayers with an egregious project labor agreement. This needless giveaway inflated college district construction costs to curry favor with a special interest — hardly a compelling qualification for congressional service.

The Coalition for Fair Employment in Construction sponsored a full-page advertisement in the Riverside Press-Enterprise on June 4, 2012 informing readers about Takano’s vote.

Riverside County voters can make Mark Takano accountable for his fiscal irresponsibility by voting for Bill Batey for Assembly. Riverside County voters can also make Jose Medina accountable for his fiscal irresponsibility by voting for John Tavaglione for Congress.

Bond Measures in the West Contra Costa Unified School District, the Sacramento City Unified School District, and the San Diego Unified School District

The upcoming November 6, 2012 election brings a parade of California local school districts and community college districts asking the Victimized California Taxpayer to approve borrowing millions (or billions) of dollars through bond sales to pay for construction projects.

Some of the construction funded by these proposed bond measures will be managed by elected school board members who recognize their responsibility to spend taxpayers’ money wisely. They will ensure that their school districts seek reasonable interest rates for bonds and award construction contracts to companies under fair and open bid competition, without favoritism.

But three school districts proposing new bond measures to voters in November are notorious for fiscal irresponsibility and mismanagement. School boards in these three districts continually implement the costly demands of union officials, including the requirement that construction contractors sign Project Labor Agreements (PLAs) with unions as a condition of work. These school districts are the West Contra Costa Unified School District, the Sacramento City Unified School District, and the San Diego Unified School District.

Local taxpayer organizations – allied with grassroots community groups and local activists – have submitted ballot arguments and rebuttal arguments against these three proposed bond measures. I expect fierce campaigns in the next two months over these very costly proposals to borrow money for school construction by selling bonds to investors.

My Overview of the Long-Term Strategy of the Republican Party of San Diego County is a Featured Column in Today’s www.FlashReport.org

Today (June 19, 2012), my commentary entitled “The Untold Story: Years of Challenging, Unglamorous Work Led to Big Republican Election Night in San Diego on June 5” was a featured column posted on www.FlashReport.org.

Some people on the Center-Right will be encouraged by the experience of the Republican Party of San Diego County. Years of developing, implementing, and persevering in a solid strategic plan for operations and performance ultimately yielded success in elections.

As a citizen or prospective citizen of California seeking to help protect economic and personal freedom, how can YOU be part of a solid strategic plan to change how this state is governed?

I have created a first draft of a detailed circular chart that will help YOU to find and fill an appropriate, specific role in civic or political activities in California.

The chart is organized in concentric circles, with Vision at the center, Mission as the innermost ring, then Goals, Strategies, and Tactics in outer rings. You’ll be able to draw a line from the vision at the center of the chart to the tactics that match your interests and capabilities.

It will be posted on this web site in a few weeks.

Jack Up Those University of California Fees Some More! Looks Like the UC Contracting Guidelines Slipped in the California Budget Will Hinder “Maximizing Efficiency”

The California State Legislature’s Democrat majority has approved a budget (Assembly Bill 1464) and sent it to Governor Jerry Brown. Presumably it still includes the language (including the typographical error) added at the last minute providing funding to the University of California with the condition that it operate under extensive guidelines meant to suppress the contracting out of services to private companies. (Apparently this language could even apply to contracts with non-profit organizations and volunteers in certain circumstances.)

How will this budget section affect basic operations of the University of California, such as custodial and janitorial services, hospital staff at UC medical centers, library staff, clerical workers, food service and cafeteria workers, pest control services, and landscaping? A January 12, 2012 report (required by law) entitled 2011 Contracting Out for Services at Newly Developed Facilities from the University of California’s Office of the President to the California State Legislature states that “campuses and medical centers view contracting out for services as an important supplement to existing resources.” The report mentions concepts foreign to state legislative leaders such as “maximizing efficiency,” “new methods,” and “best practices.”

Democrat leaders whipped that budget proposal through so fast in the past few days that it was hard for legislators, the news media, and interest groups to digest the contents. I don’t see many signs that people are picking up on my report from yesterday (June 14, 2012) revealing the new language in the budget about UC contracting. My report was linked on www.FlashReport.com today at the top of the “Golden Pen” column, but I haven’t found any news reports or press releases on the web mentioning it.

As I reported yesterday (see my post “The delay…would frustration their very purpose” – Hasty Last-Minute Add-On to California Budget Clamps Down on University of California’s Contracting Out), the insertion even includes a typographical error – see lines 38-43 on page 580: “The services are of such an urgent, temporary, or occasional nature that the delay incumbent in their implementation under the UC’s regular or ordinary hiring process would frustration their very purpose.”

This language in the budget for the University of California already applies to K-12 school districts and community college districts in Education Code sections 45103.1 and 88003.1, which became law in 2002 through Senate Bill 1419. I couldn’t find any studies on the web that focused on the actual effects of Education Code sections 45103.1 and 88003.1, but I was able to find scattered documents showing that the laws indeed discourage educational districts from contracting out services, and unions do cite these laws to fend off contracting proposals.

Evidence to Suggest This Budget Provision Will Hinder the University of California’s Efforts to Control Costs and Maximize Efficiency for the Benefit of Students 

1. This May 26, 2010 letter (see page 13 of the PDF) from the Berkeley Council of Classified Employees, American Federation of Teachers Local 6192 states bluntly that Section 45103.1 “significantly restricts the ability of the Berkeley Unified School District to contract out for services normally and customarily performed by classified employees.” (And that is the perspective from supporters of the law.)

2. This June 29, 2011 report from the California School Information Services Fiscal Crisis and Management Assistance Team (FCMAT) to the Mono County and Inyo County Offices of Education explains on page 13 that “the most significant impediment to the formation of school transportation JPA will likely be Education Code 45103.1.” Here’s an excerpt:

Known as the California School Employees Association (CSEA) signature anti-contracting bill, this section is the codification of SB 1419 passed by the California Legislature and signed by Governor Gray Davis years ago. The bill does not specifically outlaw contracting, but places strict accountability on a district to prove that contracting is less expensive than using the previous classified employees. Although the formation of a JPA is not technically contracting for work, the CSEA perceives it that way, and has challenged the formation of JPAs using this regulation in some areas of the state. The threat of potential lawsuit has dissuaded some school districts from forming a JPA. The CSEA has closely monitored school transportation in some areas of the state, but not in other areas or services such as food service. The California Association of School Transportation Officials (CASTO) and the School Transportation Coalition are working with the CSEA towards an amendment of E.C. 45103.1 that allows school districts to cooperatively provide services for each other or use a JPA. Support for this amendment is moderate.

3. A July 16, 2010 opinion letter from Jerry Brown when he was Attorney General to Assemblyman Sandre Swanson points out how this law potentially restricts contracting out:

Or, to take another example, if a school district’s contract with a private nonprofit organization involved contracting for services in non-academic positions, such as clerical, maintenance, transportation, and cafeteria services, the contract might be inconsistent with or limited by Education Code section 45103.1, which prescribes the conditions under which a school district may enter into a new contract after January 1, 2003 for personal services ordinarily performed by classified employees of the school district.

4. Here’s “Inter-Office Correspondence” in the Los Angeles Unified School District dated August 20, 2008 from Omar Del Cueto, Executive Director of iDesign Schools, concerning MLA Partner Schools (a program previously called Mentor Los Angeles):

Does MLA reserve the right to subcontract any and all services specified in the MOU to any District, public or private subcontractor permitted by law? How about Food Services?

MLA and the schools are subject to subtracting limitations to the extent that they exist in collective bargaining agreements, Personnel Commission Rules, or the law. Particularly important is Education Code section 45103.1. Section 45103.1 places significant limitations on the ability to subcontract for services that are performed by classified employees. That section applies to food service employees.

5. In a December 8, 2003 decision, the Public Employment Relations Board noted that the Long Beach Community College District Police Officers Association “argues that Education Code section 88003.1 prohibits the District’s contracting out of police services.”

6. I recalled the heady early days of the Schwarzenegger Administration when I found a January 7, 2004 press release from the now-defunct “Coalition for Local Control of School Spending” praising new Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for calling for the repeal of Senate Bill 1419 in his first State of the State address:

My proposal gets more money into the classroom and thus increases per pupil funding. First, we must give local schools the power to meet the specific needs of their own communities. This will give schools the freedom to spend the money as they — not Sacramento — best see fit to serve the children. Second, school districts are forced to spend an average of 10 to 40 percent more than necessary on non-classroom services. We must give local schools the freedom to be more cost efficient. One way to do this is to repeal SB 1419, the law that prevents schools from contracting out services such as busing and maintenance. This will free up more money for textbooks and other vital classroom needs.

7. Governor Schwarzenegger’s ill-fated California Performance Review identified Education Code Sections Sections 45103.1 and 88003.1 as impediments to reducing non-instructional costs in schools. Here are some claims from the ultimately ignored recommendation:

SB 1419 can effectively prevent school districts from obtaining needed services at all. For instance, one Bakersfield school in the desert did not have functional drinking fountains for students during hot weather because the custodian was busy and the school could not hire a plumber, pursuant to current law. At Santa Ana Unified School District, new computers are still in boxes because, “even though the computer firm said it would install the computers as part of its service without extra charge, even a free service violates SB 1419.” Theoretically, exceptions are available in the law for “work of an urgent, temporary, or occasional nature.” However, because of the difficulties in surmounting the legal hurdles under the new law, school districts may not even contract for services in these cases. The main obstacle to successfully implementing competitive sourcing of necessary services is opposition from labor unions who represent the district employees. At Reed Elementary School District in Marin County, community groups offered to hire additional groundskeepers for field maintenance (the fields are also used by community groups), but this type of partnership is prohibited by SB 1419. Community members reported that, “…even the district groundskeeper supported the partnership” that would have resulted in an additional groundskeeper being hired.

8. When the legislature approved Senate Bill 1419 in 2002, it was opposed by the American Institute of Architects – California Council, the Association of California School Administrators, the California School Boards Association, the California School Bus Contractor’s Association, Cardinal Transportation Group, Inc., the Community College League of California, Durham School Services, First Student, Laidlaw Education Services, Los Angeles Unified School District, Orinda Union School District, and San Francisco Unified School District.

9. When Senator Bob Huff’s Senate Bill x8 61 to repeal SB 1419 was considered and rejected in 2010, the repeal was supported by the California Association of School Transportation Officials, the California School Transportation Association, the California Taxpayers’ Association, the Southwest Transportation Agency, and West County Transportation.

Yes, this section of the budget matters.

“The vast majority of Californians have an unfavorable view of their state legislature – and for good reason.”

In today’s FlashReport on California’s Most Significant Political News, Assemblywoman Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) gives her concise perspective on the quick defeat of her three “good government” bills to address what she called “malpractice” in the California State Legislature. The bills were Assembly Bill 1946, Assembly Bill 1947, and Assembly Bill 1948. As reported on this web site, I submitted letters to legislative committees in support of these three bills and testified in committee hearings for two of them. All three bills were defeated on party-line votes: Republicans in support, Democrats opposed.

See the opinion piece here: California Democrats Oppose Open and Transparent Government.

Read my letter in support of Assembly Bill 1946, my letter in support of Assembly Bill 1947, and my letter in support of Assembly Bill 1948.

I would like to believe that Republicans would run the state legislature differently if they were in control. And maybe it would be run differently if someone with solid principles was selected to be Assembly Speaker. But the experience of Republicans winning control of the U.S. House of Representatives in 1994 after 40 years out of power does not build a lot of confidence. (I was a legislative assistant working in the House at the time of the 1994 election.)

Upon taking control, Republicans proposed getting rid of the 10 elevator operators in the House office buildings (out of 22 total in the U.S. Capitol complex) who pushed the buttons for members of Congress and sometimes for the staff and the public. This would have saved taxpayers $263,000 annually and eliminated an obvious symbol of elitist pomp.

On June 22, 1995, Congressman Jon Christensen (R-Nebraska) irked many of his peers by offering an amendment to eliminate the House elevator operators, saying the following: “The time has come for Members of Congress to start pushing their own buttons. Yes, that grievous, arduous task of pushing your own elevator button. No, my amendment does not propose to eliminate elevators, nor does my amendment require the Members to take the steps from here out. All my amendment requires is that we begin pushing our own elevator button.”

The subsequent debate on the House floor appears to take place in an alternative universe. See page H6222 of the June 22, 1995 Congressional Record, here.

As you might guess, many Republicans joined Democrats to defeat the amendment solidly, on a 177-246 vote. Business as usual was already taking effect, almost eight months after the elections. The button pushing (in the elevators) continues today at the U.S. Capitol complex.

Charts from the Investigative Report on the Summer 2011 Radio Ad Campaign by Union Front Group “Citizens Against Identity Theft”

Investigative Report: Unions Spent $522,500 in Summer 2011 Radio Campaign to Discourage Californians from Exercising Their Right to Petition the Government

Charts

The May 16, 2012 FlashReport on California’s Most Significant Political News featured my article detailing the extensive union radio advertising campaign in the summer of 2011 to scare California voters into declining to sign petitions to place measures on the ballot. This campaign was meant to derail efforts to gather signatures on petitions to place Fair and Open Competition measures on the ballot in San Diego and Sacramento, as well as a pension reform measure in San Diego and a paycheck protection initiative for all of California.

These union radio advertisements failed to stop what is now on the June 2012 ballot in the City of San Diego as Proposition A (Fair and Open Competition + Contracts Online) and Proposition B (Pension Reform). It also failed to stop what is now on the November 2012 statewide ballot as Paycheck Protection.

I scrutinized the raw data from the campaign financial reports and sorted it systematically into user-friendly charts and reports. Because the charts are in a somewhat difficult format to read on the FlashReport web site, below I have posted three charts from the article: a list of professional firms that received work for this campaign, a list of donors, and a list of the 33 radio stations and the amount spent by the unions on each station.

WHO GOT THE WORK FOR THIS CAMPAIGN?

$30,130.25

Sadler Strategic Media in Los Angeles collected $406,830.00 for radio airtime and production costs. It paid a total of $376,699.75 to 33 radio stations, leaving it with $30,130.25 – an 8% fee.

$36,228.74

Olson Hagel & Fishburn LLP in Sacramento collected $36,228.74 for legal work and accounting.

$12,000.00

California Majority Group, LLC (a campaign consulting firm in Sacramento) collected $12,000.00 and subcontracted with Acosta Salazar, LLC (a campaign consulting firm in Sacramento) for $8,000.00.

$4,750.00

California Professional Firefighters Ballot Issues Committee donated $4,750.00 for video services.

$3,349.38

McClatchy Insurance Agency, Inc. in Sacramento collected $3,349.38 for office space.

$2,860.00

American Web Services, Inc. in Sacramento collected $2,860.00 for a web site.

WHO GAVE THE MONEY FOR THIS CAMPAIGN?

Here are the donors of the $522,500 total given to the “Californians Against Identity Theft and Ballot Fraud, supported by labor organizations.”

$150,000.00

Members’ Voice of the State Building Trades

$100,000.00

California State Pipe Trades Council

$50,000.00

United Food and Commercial Workers Issue Education Fund

$35,000.00

California Professional Firefighters

$30,000.00

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 47

$30,000.00

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1245

$25,000.00

National City Park Apartments No. 1 (I didn’t make this one up: it is a “low to moderate income apartment community” owned by the San Diego County Building Trades Family Housing Corporation: see here.)

$25,000.00

San Diego and Imperial Counties Central Labor Council

$25,000.00

Southern California Pipe Trades District Council #16

$25,000.00

Western States Council of Sheet Metal Workers

$15,000.00

California Conference Board Amalgamated Transit Union Issues PAC

$5,000.00

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 569

$5,000.00

Painters and Allied Trades District Council #36

$2,500.00

Santa Clara & San Benito Counties Building & Construction Trades Council

$522,500.00

Total

WHICH RADIO STATIONS PLAYED THE ADS, AND HOW MUCH MONEY DID THEY GET?

Californians Against Identity Theft and Ballot Fraud reported payments to 33 radio stations:

Sacramento Media Market

$19,201.50

KFBK 1530 AM News/Talk

$16,298.75

KSEG 96.9 FM Classic Rock

$11,305.00

KNCI 105.1 FM Country

$11,275.25

KRXQ 98.5 FM Active Rock

$9,180.00

KYMX 96.1 FM Adult Contemporary

$7,191.00

KDND 107.9 FM Contemporary Hits

$6,574.75

KSTE 650 AM News/Talk

$6,324.00

KQJK 93.7 FM Adult Hits

$4,466.75

KHTK 1140 AM Sports

$3,995.00

KGBY 92.5 FM (then) Adult Contemporary

$1,224.00

KNTY101.9 FM Country

$714.00

KHLX 93.1 FM Classic Hits

$97,750.00

Total – Sacramento Media Market

 San Francisco/Northern California Media Market 

$14,400.00

KCBS 740 AM News

 Los Angeles Media Market 

$55,420.00

KFI 640 AM News/Talk

$31,005.00

KNX 1070 AM News

$17,255.00

KOST 103.5 FM Adult Contemporary

$16,022.50

KABC 790 AM News/Talk

$15,000.00

KRTH 101.1 FM Classic Hits

$12,941.25

KLOS 95.5 FM Rock

$8,670.00

KKGO 105.1 Country

$8,670.00

KSWD 100.3 Classic Rock

$5,890.00

KFWB 980 AM News/Talk

$170,873.75

Total – Los Angeles Media Market

 Riverside-San Bernardino (Inland Empire) Media Market 

$4,320.00

KFRG 95.1 FM Country

$3,761.25

KOLA 99.9 Classic Hits

$8081.25

Total – Inland Empire Media Market

 San Diego Media Market 

$18,929.50

KFMB 100.7 Adult Hits

$18,419.00

KOGO 600 AM News/Talk

$12,835.00

KYXY 96.5 FM Adult Contemporary

$9,996.00

KFMB 760 AM News/Talk

$6,613.00

KIFM 98.1 FM Smooth Adult Contemporary

$6,188.00

KSON 97.3 FM Country

$5,622.75

XEPRS 1090 AM Sports (Tijuana station)

$4,998.00

XHPRS 105.7 FM Oldies (Tijuana station)

$1,963.50

KPRI 102.1 FM Adult Album Alternative

$85,564.75

Total – San Diego Media Market

 Total Spent on California Radio Ads: $376,669.75

My Investigative Report on www.FlashReport.org: Unions Spent $522,500 in Summer 2011 Radio Campaign to Discourage Californians from Exercising Their Right to Petition the Government

Today (May 16, 2012) the FlashReport on California’s Most Significant Political News features my exclusive article outlining the details of the extensive union radio advertising campaign in the summer of 2011 to scare California voters into declining to sign petitions to place measures on the ballot.

Nine months later, California citizens are now able to scrutinize the campaign financial reports for this radio campaign and get donor and expenditure information. Union leaders did not provide this information to the public or to the news media at the time they were running the commercials, of course. Citizens can now see which professional firms assisted with the campaign and how much money the unions paid these firms for services. We can even see how much the unions paid each of the 33 radio stations that ran the commercials.

One of my frustrations about California political news coverage is the lack of research and exposure of the dirty details of old political strategies that created a ruckus when they occurred. Perhaps editors and reporters have done market research and determined that their audience would consider this to be “old news” not worthy of reading. Perhaps they just assume that their audience wouldn’t care and such coverage would not generate public attention and the resulting circulation and advertising revenue. Or perhaps the research is too tedious and technical for busy reporters under constant pressure.

Well, I have no advertisers, and I did not forget about this $522,500 radio advertising campaign, run by a union front group calling itself Citizens Against Identity Theft.

Read my article here: Investigative Report: Unions Spent $522,500 in Summer 2011 Radio Campaign to Discourage Californians from Exercising Their Right to Petition the Governmentwww.FlashReport.org – May 16, 2012

UPDATE (April 20, 2013): Today I stumbled on an old February 6, 2012 report in the Sacramento Bee that Britton “Jerry” McFetridge had died. I note in my article that McFetridge was one of the officers of Californians Against Identity Theft, but I had been unable to find his current occupation. The article describes his career:

He served under several Democratic members of the Legislature, including current state Treasurer Bill Lockyer. He is credited with mentoring dozens of Democratic staff members and shepherding significant legislation through the process over the years, including the state’s prevailing wage law and the California Occupational Safety and Health Act.

After leaving the Legislature, he became legislative and political director for the State Building and Construction Trades Council.

The article also quotes Senate Secretary Greg Schmidt, described as “a close personal friend” of McFetridge. Schmidt was the official in the legislature who deflected the requests of Associated Builders and Contractors of California under the authority of the Legislative Open Records Act to obtain certain public documents. These documents were related to a secret internal directive to require contractors to employ an “all-union workforce” on the 2005 construction of the Capitol Park Safety and Security Improvement Project. Read the letter: Schmidt Response to California Legislative Open Records Request on “All-Union Workforce” for State Capitol Project – July 25, 2005.