Category Archives: Political Corruption

News and information about political corruption.

Mike Robbins’ Public Communications at the May 3, 2016 El Segundo City Council Meeting

First, I want to thank outgoing Mayor Pro Tem Carl Jacobson for his many decades of service to the City and the citizens of El Segundo, as Mayor, as Mayor Pro Tem, as Councilmember, on the Planning Commission, and in other capacities.

I had the privilege of serving on City Council with Carl Jacobson as mayor. We agreed on most issues, but when we disagreed, I always knew he was honest, intelligent, competent, and doing what he believed was in the best interest of the City and the citizens of El Segundo.

Second, I would like to congratulate the newly elected City Council Members, Don Brann, Carol Pirsztuk, and Drew Boyles. The City Council election turned out the way I believe will be best for our City. I am disappointed with the passage of Measure B, the 50 percent increase in the Hotel Transient Occupancy Tax.

I hope that increase in City tax revenue will not trigger a clause in the union contracts to give automatic additional COLA pay raises to the City employees. Such a clause existed in the previous union contracts. …

Any change in the way the mayor and mayor pro tem are elected should be based on what is best for the citizens of El Segundo, and should be put before the voters of El Segundo. All of the pros and cons of such a change should be carefully considered before putting the question before the voters. … Continue reading

Posted in California, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Hotel Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT), El Segundo Measure B TOT Tax Hike, El Segundo News, El Segundo Tax and Fee Increases, Elections, Firefighter Union Corruption, Police Union Corruption, Political Corruption, Politics, Tax Policy and Issues, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Mike Robbins’ Public Communications at the May 3, 2016 El Segundo City Council Meeting

Inherent Conflict of Interest – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Mike Robbins

Inherent Conflict of Interest

The Police Officers’ and Firefighters’ Associations (unions) bankrolled the Measure B tax-hike campaign. FPPC campaign disclosure forms show the police and fire unions spent an overwhelming $39,247.50 in our city election ($19,033.50 police, and $20,214.00 fire) to influence voters on Measure B and the City Council race.

This is nearly four times the $10,000 they contributed to the “Yes on Measure A” campaign in 2014, for eleven tax hikes, on residents and businesses. The fire union probably spent more than $100,000 on their Measure P campaign in 2012, to outsource our local Fire Department to Los Angeles County for a reduced level of service, for their own financial benefit.

None of the firefighters and only about one-fourth of the police live in town. They campaign in our local elections to maximize their pay and pensions, and raise taxes and fees to pay for it, no matter how excessive and unsustainable.

The latest available El Segundo City Employee compensation data, for 2014, at TransparentCalifornia.com, shows the 58 sworn police employees had the following total annual pay and benefits statistics: Minimum=$139,028; Maximum=$358,536; Average=$228,240; and Median (half above and half below)=$214,867.

The 44 sworn firefighter employees had the following total annual pay and benefits statistics: Minimum=$148,235; Maximum=$375,524; Average=$247,646; and Median=$225,882. The firefighters are paid to sleep and eat, including some of those hours at the overtime rate of 150% their regular pay rate.

The union campaigns have nothing to do with safety and everything to do with union greed.

– Mike Robbins


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Posted in California, Economy and Economics, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Herald Letters, El Segundo Hotel Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT), El Segundo Measure B TOT Tax Hike, El Segundo News, El Segundo Tax and Fee Increases, Elections, Firefighter and Police Union Compensation and Pensions, Firefighter Union Corruption, Fraud Waste and Abuse, Government Employee Compensation and Pensions, Letters to the Editor, Measure A - 5 New Taxes and 6 Tax Inceases, Measure P - Firefighters Union Initiative, Police Union Corruption, Political Corruption, Politics, Tax Policy and Issues, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Inherent Conflict of Interest – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Mike Robbins

Smear Campaign? – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Marianne Fong

Smear Campaign?

I would like to assure Marie Fellhauer’s campaign supporter, Jenica Brigham, that I do exist. I am not “the same person” as Mike Robbins as she claimed in her insulting 4/7/16 Herald letter. Brigham attacked me, Mike Robbins, and others with childish name-calling and other baseless personal attacks because we reminded voters of Fellhauer’s record on City Council. She used personal attacks because she could not disprove any of our facts about Fellhauer’s true record.

Brigham claimed the residents “think everything should be free.” In fact, we don’t want to be charged twice for the same things, such as $1,850+ fire department ambulance transport fees when taxes already pay for our fire department.

Brigham described herself as “a young woman”, apparently to attract young voters to vote for Fellhauer. But at age 38, she hardly qualifies as “a young woman”. By 38, you’d think she would have registered to vote. She is not even registered to vote in El Segundo, at least not as of 2014.

Another Fellhauer campaign supporter, Beth Schodorf, submitted a letter calling accurate descriptions of Fellhauer’s City Council record a “smear campaign”. Now who’s doing the smearing? Schodorf even defended Fellhauer by attacking Lou Kutil. That was a mistake. For many years Lou Kutil, an elderly resident himself, has volunteered his own time and money to drive elderly residents to their doctor appointments, wait for them, and drive them back home.

– Marianne Fong


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Posted in California, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Herald Letters, El Segundo News, El Segundo Tax and Fee Increases, Elections, Firefighter Union Corruption, Fraud Waste and Abuse, Letters to the Editor, Political Corruption, Politics, Tax Policy and Issues, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Smear Campaign? – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Marianne Fong

Election Information Flyers Were Distributed Throughout El Segundo

Election Information Flyers were distributed throughout the City of El Segundo to inform voters about Measure B and the City Council candidates before the April 12, 2016 El Segundo General Municipal Election. Election Flyer #1 was distributed on Sunday, April … Continue reading

Posted in California, Economy and Economics, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Measure B TOT Tax Hike, El Segundo News, El Segundo Tax and Fee Increases, Elections, Firefighter and Police Union Compensation and Pensions, Firefighter Union Corruption, Fraud Waste and Abuse, Government Employee Compensation and Pensions, Police Union Corruption, Political Corruption, Politics, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Election Information Flyers Were Distributed Throughout El Segundo

Important Information for the April 12, 2016 El Segundo General Municipal Election

May 4, 2016 Election Update Final Election Results Certified at the May 3, 2016 El Segundo City Council Meeting The old El Segundo City Council conducted minimal City business and adopted a resolution certifying the April 12, 2016 General Municipal … Continue reading

Posted in Beach Reporter Letters, California, Economy and Economics, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Herald Letters, El Segundo Hotel Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT), El Segundo Measure B TOT Tax Hike, El Segundo News, El Segundo Tax and Fee Increases, Elections, Firefighter and Police Union Compensation and Pensions, Firefighter Union Corruption, Fraud Waste and Abuse, Government Employee Compensation and Pensions, Letters to the Editor, Police Union Corruption, Political Corruption, Politics, Tax Policy and Issues, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Important Information for the April 12, 2016 El Segundo General Municipal Election

Where to Find What El Segundo Pays its City Employee Union Members and Managers

Here is where to find out what El Segundo pays its City employee union members and managers. Make sure to see the explanatory information below to understand what the data represents. By far, the police and firefighter employees have the … Continue reading

Posted in California, Economy and Economics, El Segundo, Firefighter and Police Union Compensation and Pensions, Firefighter Union Corruption, Government Employee Compensation and Pensions, Police Union Corruption, Politics, Public Records, Tax Policy and Issues, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Where to Find What El Segundo Pays its City Employee Union Members and Managers

Let’s Be Realistic – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Jane Waag Friedkin

Let’s Be Realistic

Incumbent City Council candidate Marie Fellhauer said she “is fighting to get our fair share of the county property tax levy.” That may sound nice as a campaign slogan, but it has little basis in reality.

She compares El Segundo and Manhattan Beach with respect to property tax revenue, but not business tax revenue. Is she willing to give up a share of El Segundo’s massive business tax revenue in exchange for a share of Manhattan Beach’s property tax revenue?

Fellhauer and Dave Atkinson voted to charge El Segundo residents and non-residents fire department ambulance transport fees of $1,850 or more per transport. They had plenty of time to rescind the fees, but did not, even though residents spoke against them at City Council meetings. Is it realistic to believe they might rescind these fees after they are re-elected for another four years?

Is it realistic to believe Fellhauer would have rejected the police and fire union endorsements had they decided to endorse her? Her allies and supporters, former Mayors Eric Busch, Bill Fisher, and Sandra Jacobs, all received police and fire union endorsements and campaign expenditures. The firefighters even delivered and installed their campaign signs.

Fellhauer claims she’s making a sacrifice by declining City Council benefits. She said others should make the same sacrifice. However, she is not making any sacrifice because she gets generous benefits through her LAPD job. City Council pays only about $10,800 per year. Hopefully, the benefits help attract more competent and honest candidates.

– Jane Waag Friedkin


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Posted in California, Economy and Economics, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Herald Letters, El Segundo News, El Segundo Tax and Fee Increases, Elections, Firefighter Union Corruption, Fraud Waste and Abuse, Letters to the Editor, Manhattan Beach, Police Union Corruption, Political Corruption, Politics, Tax Policy and Issues, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Let’s Be Realistic – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Jane Waag Friedkin

Is Marie Fellhauer Endangering Proposition 13? – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Mike Robbins

Is Marie Fellhauer Endangering Proposition 13?

Marie Fellhauer and Dave Atkinson are campaigning as conservatives, but the facts prove otherwise. Fellhauer and Atkinson even endorsed Scott Houston for Water Board Director after he ran as a self-described Progressive (ultra-liberal) for Democratic Party County Central Committee, and after he lobbied City Council to enact Measure P (to outsource our local fire department to L.A. County) directly into law without letting us vote on it.

Marie Fellhauer, Dave Atkinson, and Bill Fisher have repeatedly blamed El Segundo’s financial problems on Proposition 13 and the lower percentage of property taxes coming back to El Segundo compared to other cities. However, El Segundo has higher property values than most California cities, which helps compensate for that. Also, roughly three-fourths of the land area in El Segundo is commercial or industrial, producing significantly more tax revenue and costing significantly less for City services than residential property.

Fellhauer claims she will get the state legislature to increase the percentage of property taxes coming back to El Segundo. However, she fails to identify which cities will volunteer to give up some of their percentage so El Segundo can have more.

Fellhauer may be playing with fire and opening up a Pandora’s Box by encouraging the state legislature to change Proposition 13. One possible outcome might be weakening or eliminating Proposition 13 altogether and going back to the days when homeowners, especially the elderly, were taxed out of their homes by greedy tax-and-spend politicians and government employee unions.

– Mike Robbins


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Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association (HJTA) honors former El Segundo City Councilman Mike Robbins

October 1, 2014

The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association (HJTA), founded by California Proposition 13 sponsor Howard Jarvis, has honored former El Segundo City Councilman Mike Robbins as a “Hometown Hero” for leading the successful campaign to defeat Measure A in the April 8, 2014 El Segundo General Municipal Election. Measure A had ELEVEN tax hikes in one ballot measure!

Here is the article in their official statewide newsletter, Taxing Times, Vol. 40, Issue 3 for Fall 2014:


HOMETOWN HEROES

HJTA was very pleased to receive the following update from former El Segundo councilman Mike Robbins after local Election Day, April 8. Here are excerpts:

We had a great victory in El Segundo last night! The citizens and taxpayers won, and the city-employee unions with lots of campaign money and a significant conflict of interest lost – AGAIN!

Thank you to everyone who helped.

El Segundo Measure A, ELEVEN TAX HIKES IN ONE MEASURE, taxing RESIDENTS and BUSINESSES, lost by 57% NO to 43% YES, despite the “Yes on A” campaign spending a whopping $33,129.87 in small-town El Segundo, including $17,500 from four city-employee unions – $5,000 from the fire union, $5,000 from the police union, $5,000 from the city employees’ union, and $2,500 from the California Teamsters Public Affairs Council in Sacramento (supervisory and professional employees’ union) at a cost of $25.74 per vote.

Measure A would have created new taxes on residents for electricity, water, gas, and all forms of “communications services,” including landline telephones, cell phones, Internet, cable TV, and satellite, to pay for excessive compensation and pensions for city employees. Firefighters and police are paid $150,000 to more than $380,000 each in total compensation per year.

I, together with two other former El Segundo City Council members, and two other long-term city residents, co-authored and submitted an argument against Measure A and a rebuttal to the argument for Measure A, and I authored and distributed two one-page double-sided campaign flyers on Saturday, April 5, and a third on Sunday, April 6.

The HJTA hat is off to Mike and other active El Segundo taxpayers who made this victory possible.

( Continue reading … )


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Posted in California, Economy and Economics, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Herald Letters, El Segundo News, Elections, Firefighter Union Corruption, Letters to the Editor, Measure P - Firefighters Union Initiative, Political Corruption, Politics, Tax Policy and Issues, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Is Marie Fellhauer Endangering Proposition 13? – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Mike Robbins

Fantasy? – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Carol James

Fantasy?

It’s interesting to read Marie Fellhauer’s election materials that arrive every few days. She takes credit for “successfully negotiating a tax resolution with the refinery” and “successfully negotiated agreement with Wiseburn School District…for the world-class pool facility” except she wasn’t a negotiator on either.

Oh, and she’s “fighting to get our fair share of the property tax levy”. Exactly who is she fighting? Is she winning or losing? Why haven’t we heard anything about this for the last four years?

Speaking of the last four years, all of a sudden, she’s the senior citizens’ best friend…my friend who lives at Park Vista says in four years Marie has never attended any events at Park Vista until the very last board meeting before the election. She brought her baby and husband. Coincidence? My friend said to tell her the residents may be senior but they’re not stupid.

Also, why are her big donations coming from out of town businesses and people? Shouldn’t the ‘Local Girl’ get local donations?

– Carol James


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Posted in California, Doug Willmore's Great Chevron Shakedown, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Herald Letters, El Segundo News, El Segundo Tax and Fee Increases, Elections, Letters to the Editor, Political Corruption, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Fantasy? – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Carol James

Entitlement Versus Affordability – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by David Burns

Entitlement Versus Affordability

There’s been frequent talk about what El Segundo residents “deserve” when it comes to funding public safety services. The discussion should really be about what we can afford. Residents got what they deserved in past budgets that funded public safety services from 2000 through 2009. Police and Fire enjoyed annual pay raises in the range of 5% to 9+% annually from 2000 through 2009. They received a public benefit of enhanced pensions that saw city costs rise by ten’s of millions of dollars over a decade. By getting what our past City Council’s felt our public safety officials were entitled to or “deserved” nearly bankrupted our city. City Hall’s past culture of entitlement nearly cost us our independent fire department and paramedic ambulance services. El Segundo had a platinum spending culture, unfortunately, our budget couldn’t sustain such entitlements or costs.

That’s the hard lesson residents and elected officials must remember. The City Council has taken a lot of hits for maintaining fiscal responsibility and balanced budget accountability, resulting in a barrage of disrespect from the public safety unions displaying unprofessionalism by name calling and disrespecting city leadership. This must end.

The new City Council must remember the lessons of the past. If Measure B passes, we must look to the future of what El Segundo can afford. What El Segundo deserves is quality public safety services, living within our means, maintaining services that are affordable, and ensuring that public safety is provided with quality equipment, resources, and training.

– David Burns


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Posted in California, Economy and Economics, El Segundo, El Segundo Election Coverage, El Segundo Herald Letters, El Segundo Hotel Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT), El Segundo Measure B TOT Tax Hike, El Segundo News, El Segundo Tax and Fee Increases, Elections, Firefighter and Police Union Compensation and Pensions, Firefighter Union Corruption, Fraud Waste and Abuse, Government Employee Compensation and Pensions, Letters to the Editor, Police Union Corruption, Political Corruption, Politics, Tax Policy and Issues, Union Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Entitlement Versus Affordability – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by David Burns