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Anaheim Insider here. The real one.

Tom Tait had a campaign fundraiser last week. It was mildly attended from what this insider’s sources have said: about 40 people, give or take. Many were family members or staff, along with those you’d expect: Amin David, Jose Moreno, Cynthia Ward; the mayor’s personal clique of supporters more than neighborhood representation. No surprising given how the mayor has progressively alienated his supporters.

Tait touched on the topic of his opponents. He took partial credit for Councilwoman Lucille Kring’s election in 2012 and called her a flip-flopper, and mentioned Lorri Galloway as his friend and colleague who decided to run against him.

Tait kept up his pitching for the Democrats’ pet party-building project in central OC: by-district council election in Anaheim. he pointed out that by-district elections would be on the November ballot and thanked Jose Moreno, the liberal ethnic politician whose lawsuit against Anaheim cost the taxpayers almost $3 million. Tait said by-districts elections would give everyone a voice; someone might let him know that the same number of people can vote in both at-large and by-district elections.

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Anaheim Insider here.

Adam Elmahrek’s hit piece…excuse me, article…on Lucille Kring was forwarded to me earlier today. Not to put too fine a point on it, but what a shoddy piece of…journalism.

It’s a long article, but here’s the gist: Elmahrek claims Kring changed her position on four issues in response to campaign contributions.  He offer no proof. Even the liberal “watchdog” types the Voice always calls for quotes to support their slant scoff at Elmahrek’s allegations.

Elmahrek does dredge up Cory Briggs, a liberal environmental ambulance-chaser from San Diego to echo his allegations and chirp that Kring should hire a lawyer. Briggs is the same guy brought in by OCCORD to ask the AG and the DA to prosecute Kring and the other three councilmembers on trumped-up conflict-of-interest charges.

If Elmahrek is truly interested in writing about flip-flopping Anaheim politicians, how about Mayor Tom Tait (I realize that is ridiculous since Tait has blanket immunity from the Voice)? How about the story of how the mayor’s broken promises to council candidate Steve Lodge helped break his candidacy, a story now well-known in Anaheim political circles?

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There was another gang-related shooting in Anaheim, which took place this evening on the 700 block of north East Street. The OC Register reports:

Officers arrived to find a male suffering from at least one gunshot wound lying on a sidewalk in front of a residence.

The victim was taken to a hospital in critical condition, Dunn said.

It wasn’t immediately clear what sparked the shooting, and no information about the shooter or shooters has been released.

Based on the circumstances, police suspect that the shooting is gang-related, Dunn said.

Quick! Organize a streetside candidate forum near the scene of the shooting and engage in some heavy-duty community listening. Or respond by hitting visitors to Disneyland and Angel games with a dollar admission tax. Or maybe divert a fixed percentage of transient occupancy tax — say, 1%? — to city social programs.

Any of those should do the trick.

At the Anna Drive candidate forum last week, most of the candidates in attendance endorsed the idea of imposing a tax of $1 a ticket on the Disneyland Resort, Anaheim Stadium and the Honda Center in order to fund “youth programs and neighborhood development.”

Those pro-tax candidates include government union activist John Leos, Green Party activist Duane Roberts and Brian Chuchua (who, amazingly enough, is endorsed by the OC Republican Party).

Leaving aside the fact this ticket tax is bad public and economic policy, as a practical matter it is unworkable. It doesn’t appear to have occurred to Leos, Roberts or Chuchua that the city cannot single out those venues for a ticket tax, while exempting other venues in the city. The tax would have to e applied across the board, or not at all. So if John Leos wants a new admission tax (because that is what it is) to provide dedicated revenue to fund social programs, he’ll have to slap it on movie theaters, on the Grove of Anaheim, or any other venue where people are charged for admission.

Anaheim is a major city, the 10th largest in the state of California, and being a councilmember requires significantly more than this kind of seat-of-the-pants policy improvisation, or glibly endorsing a half-baked admission tax idea tossed out at a street-side candidate forum.

The Anaheim city council campaign began in earnest last week as 60,311 vote-by-mail ballots were mailed to Anaheim voters by the OC Registrar of Voters (1,104 have been returned thus far, and total VBMs issued is up to 61,994).

Campaigns times their mail campaigns to that exercise, and the first mailer (from Anaheim school trustee Jordan Brandman) landed a few days prior to VBMs being mailed.

Since then, mail pieces have been raining on Anaheim voters. Brandman and Steve Chavez Lodge have been dominating the mail box, both in their own pieces and in mailers from independent expenditure committees. Lucille Kring sent out one piece, as did John Leos (neither of which I have).

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Anaheim council candidate John Leos touts his “transparency ordinance” as a cure for much of what he thinks ails Anaheim city government. Now, it’s not a transparency ordinance so much as an anti-outsourcing ordinance, and it’s really an OCEA-spawned policy that was attached to Leos last year, when the government union spent in the neighborhood of $100,000 promoting it and Leos in a series of mailers to Anaheim residents.

But that’s a topic for a future post. What would have a more beneficial impact on Anaheim city government than the Leos/OCEA transparency Trojan horse is consequential transparency in the form of a COIN ordinance.

COIN stands for “Civic Openness In Negotiation.” The Costa Mesa City Council adopted it last month to govern how the city negotiates with its employee unions – in order to get a better deal for taxpayers and bring those negotiations into the sunlight where residents can see, assess and weigh in before the City Council approves the final contract. [Here’s the staff report on the Costa Mesa COIN ordinance, and the ordinance itself.]

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Mayor Tom Tait has endorsed Lucille Kring, the twice-former councilwoman who is attempting to win a third, non-sequential term (which I’d wager is probably be a first in Anaheim history).

This rounds out the Tait ticket for the two open council seats on the November ballot – the other being government union activist John Leos, whom the OCEA spent more than $200,000 trying to elect to council in 2010.

It’s an illustration, at the city politics level, of Lord Palmerston’s axiom that there are no permanent allies, only permanent interests.

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The Voice of OC has coverage of last week’s council candidate forum, sponsored by the West Anaheim Neighborhood Development Council, or WAND. It’s worth reading, and is certainly more informative than the OC Weekly’s effort. I’ll tender a few observations based on the article.

In response about ensuring that city street repairs won’t be impacted by funds used to purchase the land for the ARTIC station, John Leos and Brian Chuchua turned the question to the GardenWalk project:

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The West Anaheim Neighborhood Association held a forum last night for Anaheim City Council candidates. 7 of the 9 candidates were there:

  • Jordan Brandman
  • Steve Chavez Lodge
  • Lucille Kring
  • John Leos
  • Brian Chuchua
  • Linda Linder
  • Duane Roberts

Liberal OC Weekly writer Gabriel San Roman went, and has an OK write up here.  San Roman took the time to criticize Steve Lodge:

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