In the last few years I have noticed that more and more candidates running for local offices (Council seats, School Districts) either are ignorant of the campaign rules or choose to ignore them.

The latest example are most of the candidates running for a Trustee position on the North Orange County Community College District (NOCCCD) — up for election this Tuesday.

For the first time in many years, this Trustee position is to be filled by an election and not merely by an appointment by the other Trustees.

There are four candidates running in this election: Stephen Blount, Steve Hwangbo, Daniel Billings and Al Salehi.

As of this writing, Blount has not filed his Campaign Disclosure Statement that was due on Jan. 28th – in other words he is now 11 days past the filing deadline.

Steven Hwangbo is in even worse compliance with campaign laws in that he has not filed ANY Campaign Disclosure Statements according to the Registrar of Voters office which have sent him two letters apprising him of the missing reports.

Daniel Billings has had a Complaint filed with the Fair Political Practices Commission regarding his failure to identify who or what is paying for his campaign signs, door hangers, mailers, etc. State law requires all of these items to include the statement “Paid for by Daniel Billings for NOCCCD 2016”. Although Billings was notified of this requirement early in his campaign, he continues to post signs and other campaign literature without this disclosure requirement.

Campaign law is all about disclosure so that the voters can determine where the candidate’s funds are coming from.

To ignore these disclosure rules is the height of arrogance and shows a true lack of ethical conduct.

Ignorance of our campaign laws, which have been in place since Watergate, is no excuse.

And if it is due to arrogance on the part of the candidates who do not comply with our campaign laws, then SHAME ON THEM.

Since you've made it this far,

You are obviously connected to your community and value good journalism. As an independent and local nonprofit, our news is accessible to all, regardless of what they can afford. Our newsroom centers on Orange County’s civic and cultural life, not ad-driven clickbait. Our reporters hold powerful interests accountable to protect your quality of life. But it’s not free to produce. It depends on donors like you.

BREAKING TEXT ALERTS

Subscribe today to receive Voice of OC’s breaking news text messages (free beyond your standard messaging rates).

Join the conversation: In lieu of comments, we encourage readers to engage with us across a variety of mediums. Join our Facebook discussion. Message us via our website or staff page. Send us a secure tip. Share your thoughts in a community opinion piece.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.