Category Archives: Negative ads

Anti-Birdseye PAC receives another $25,000, total now $180,000

By Roger Straw, October 30, 2018

Another Southern California labor PAC for Largaespada and Strawbridge, against Birdseye

The Anti-Birdseye political action committee (PAC) filed a new contribution report yesterday.  This report shows another receipt of $25,000 on October 26.  The contributor is listed as “Building California Together PAC.”  This raises the total fund to $180,000 in stated opposition to Birdseye and in support of two of her opponents.

So who is this new outside California PAC?

The CA Secretary of State identifies Building California Together PAC as a relatively new entity, with no contributions received earlier than May of this year.  $30,000 was received in July from the Electrical Workers #11 in Pasadena and another $25,000 was received in October from California Resources Corporation of Los Angeles.  Note that California Resources Corporation is “an independent company and leading producer of oil and natural gas focused exclusively on California.”

The CA Secretary of State shows that Building California Together PAC made small contributions in Southern California races and only the one large contribution to our Anti-Birdseye PAC.

DATE PAYEE CONTEST POSITION AMOUNT
10/25/2018 WORKING FAMILIES FOR A STRONG BENICIA OTHER SUPPORT $25,000.00
10/11/2018 IBARRA FOR SCHOOL BOARD 2018, LEANNE OTHER SUPPORT $1,500.00
10/11/2018 LARA FOR ERUSD SCHOOL BOARD 2018, JOSE OTHER SUPPORT $1,500.00
10/11/2018 DINO FOR PALMDALE WATER DISTRICT 2018, VINCENT OTHER SUPPORT $1,000.00
10/11/2018 HOFBAUER PALMDALE MAYOR 2018, COMMITTEE TO ELECT STEVE MAYOR SUPPORT $1,000.00
10/11/2018 SMITH FOR PSD BOARD 2018, NANCY OTHER SUPPORT $1,000.00
10/11/2018 VELADOR FOR PALMDALE SCHOOL BOARD 2018, COMMITTEE TO ELECT RALPH OTHER SUPPORT $1,000.00
10/11/2018 WILSON FOR PALMDALE WATER BOARD 2018, DON OTHER SUPPORT $1,000.00

For previous reports of contributions and expenditures of the Anti-Birdseye PAC, see Anti-Birdseye outside money – 3 new expenditure reports.

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    Anti-Birdseye spending increases again today…

    By Roger Straw, October 25, 2018

    Yet more anti-Birdseye expenditures

    News gets old fast around here… Just yesterday, the City of Benicia posted on its website, three new Valero/labor PAC Expenditure Reports.

    Today we learned that Valero/labor submitted three MORE expenditure reports in their bid to buy a seat on Council! The PAC is up to 17 expenditure reports now (and the original 5 income reports).

    The three new reports today show additional expenses for robo calls (with script by former police Lieutenant Scott Przekurat) and new digital ads (LL & CS smiling-faces alongside an unfounded put-down of Kari Birdseye.

    One expenditure report also shows new income of $800 from Alfred Conhagen Inc., a Benicia hydraulic repair service that I assume must do a huge business with Valero.

    The reports show cumulative totals for LL $28,874, CS $20,586, and Anti-Birdseye $18,836. Lots of money left – they have amassed a total of $155,000 now, more than five times what an individual candidate is allowed to spend on a campaign.

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      Lingering questions regarding Anti-Birdseye PAC money

      By Roger Straw, October 18, 2018

      The Benicia City Attorney and City Clerk were not helpful in clarifying certain questions regarding funds collected and spent by the Anti-Birdseye political action committee (PAC) as of October 13.

      In my last report of October 13, I was able to post links to the City of Benicia website showing the Anti-Birdseye PAC’s first Contribution Report (Form 497-1), totaling $74,200.  Strangely, I was able to report an additional $30,000 contribution which showed up in an Expenditure Report (Form 496-4).  So I reported total receipts of $74,200 + $30,000, or $104,200.

      Also in my Oct 13 report, I was able to post links to the City of Benicia website showing details from the four Anti-Birdseye PAC Expenditure forms. Form 496-1 reported $9,900 spent for phone calls on behalf of candidate Strawbridge; Form 496-2 showed $9,900 spent for phone calls on behalf of candidate Largaespada; and Form 496-3 showed $9,900 spent for phone calls to oppose candidate Kari Birdseye.  An additional Form 496-4 showed $6,689 for negative digital advertising to smear candidate Birdseye

      These expenditure reports confused me, so I wrote to our Benicia City Attorney and City Clerk asking for clarification, “On 496 Expenditure forms #1, #2 and #3, the exact same amounts are listed, $5,166.66 and $4,733.34.  Does this mean that a total of $9,900 was spent THREE times, for a grand total of $29,700?  Or are all three forms reporting the same dollars for a total of only $9,900?”

      The City could not, or would not take time to help.  City Attorney Heather McLaughlin replied, “Your questions are more properly addressed to the FPPC.  The city doesn’t get into substantively analyzing the reports.”

      Left to my own conclusions, I’d guess that a total of $9,900 had been spent on phone calls as of Oct. 13, and was simply reported three times on the separate forms to show the PAC’s intent to support CS & LL and to oppose Kari Birdseye.  The additional $6,689 on video smears against Birdseye brings the total spent as of Oct. 13 to $16,589, leaving $87,611 in the PAC’s account for future campaign efforts.

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