Citizens Deliver Letter Demanding Council Immediately Implement Conflict of Interest Protections
Volunteers with the Oaks Project delivered a letter today to the Claremont City Council demanding the immediate implementation of Proposition A, the anti-kickback initiative which received 55% of Claremont voters’ support in the March municipal election.
Proposition A, the Taxpayer Protection Amendment, went into effect on March 30 and is now law in Claremont, as it is in several cities across California. However, the Claremont City Council continues their opposition to the new law and is considering ‘due diligence’ measures and a possible court case to delay implementation of the measure.
In the letter, the Oaks Project declared to the City Council, “As public representatives, you are obliged to implement Prop A. To do otherwise would be indefensible and send a message to your constituents that though they played by the rules, the Council will just change the rules if the Council does not like them.”
The Oaks further accused the City Council of using the performance of ‘due diligence’ as another delaying tactic, given that “(1) you have spent thousands of taxpayer dollars on a report that demonstrates that Prop A complements existing state law; and (2) you have had fifteen months to seek outside opinions but evidently did not.”
The City of Claremont has also consulted with the cities of Santa Monica and Pasadena, where the initiative passed with 59 and 60% of the vote, respectively, regarding the possibility of another legal challenge.
The Oaks Project further objected strenuously to any taxpayer money being spent to challenge the initiative. “The possibility that Claremont City Council will use taxpayer funds to fight Prop A is absurd,” stated Oaks Project organizer, Carmen Balber. “Their constituents overwhelmingly supported Prop A in order to protect city money from being used for personal benefit. Now the City Council wants to use tax dollars to reinstate their right to take payoffs Ñ they’ll be held accountable if they try.”