Election deception is occurring in Newport Beach. On June 26 the city council put a charter amendment on the ballot purporting to require a vote before the city could issue lease obligation debt, which by definition does not require a tax increase. Newport Beach would be the only city in the nation to adopt this poorly thought out and expensive requirement. That should tell you something right there.
Watch the meeting video as the council learns for the first time that sea walls and dredging of the harbor are the most likely projects to fall under this restriction and see them feebly try to concoct loopholes and exceptions. In the end, they just didn’t care about the impact of this measure on our infrastructure and ability to respond to our capital needs.
The real reason for this ballot measure is to create a vehicle so that the Team Newport political machine can circumvent our campaign spending limits. It’s exactly what was done in 2016. Just another dishonest way to cheat.
But that is not the worst of it. Bob Rush, acting as a shill for the machine, filed fake arguments in opposition. The machine is apparently deathly afraid of you hearing the truth about this sham, so to block the real opponets they cheated again. Rush is a failed candidate best known for his opposition to our Group Home Ordinance and his support for ousting Dave Kiff. He was strong ally of Scott Peotter in the recent recall effort.
Adding 3,700 pages to the Museum House petitions, failing to enforce our conflict of interest and campaign contribution limits against themselves, ousting our outstanding city manager, issuing subpoenas to their political opponents, awarding contracts to their friends and donors; there is a continuing pattern of dishonesty.
Rush was speaking for the machine when he told the real opponents including Jean Watt “to kiss my ass”. That’s how the Team Newport machine feels about our community.
The dishonesty and hypocrisy of this cynical effort was best displayed on the same night this ballot measure was adopted when the council approved $8.8 million in bonds and up to $27 million in new property taxes in order to benefit a developer/campaign donor. The impacted residents did not get to vote on these new taxes.
In November, vote against dishonesty. Vote against the Team Newport machine including Peotter and Duffield.
Keith Curry is the former Mayor of Newport Beach
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