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Tuesday, April 4, 2006

Cops may pass buck on "clean money" scam charges

It looks as though the Portland police are rejecting the city auditor's request to investigate alleged fraud in the "voter-owned elections" scandal. According to this blog post, the local bluecoats are turning the matter over the state attorney general's office and asking that office to do the detective work.

In the meantime, the $145,000 or so of "clean money" paid out to the Boyles campaign continues to be unaccounted for by the city. Wonderful.

Comments (34)

Thanks, Erik!

I'm glad they took a pass.

The detectives will have to devote themselves to those murder, rape, assault, and burglary investigations instead.

What were Blackmer/Sten thinking?

Perhaps the Police Bureau has, um, other things to deal with.


Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Portland police chief accused of misconduct

Portland Mayor Tom Potter issued the following statement in response to requests for a tort claim against Police Chief Derrick Foxworth filed Tuesday. City officials refused to release the claim.

Potter's statement:

"On March 16, 2006, I became aware of allegations of misconduct made against
Portland Police Chief Derrick Foxworth. I met immediately with Yvonne
Deckard, director of the city of Portland's Human Resources Bureau, to
discuss the allegations.

"I asked Ms. Deckard to immediately undertake a thorough investigation to
determine the merit of these allegations. That investigation has begun. Because this is a personnel matter, city officials cannot discuss the investigation.

"I have asked Chief Foxworth to continue in his duties pending resolution of
this matter."

Ah, me.

KATU is reporting that the alledged misconduct is related to a sexual harassment claim filed by a female desk clerk.

It'll be interesting watching the investigation unfold behind closed doors.

the $145,000 or so of "clean money" paid out to the Boyles campaign...

More immediate, tomorrow is the deadline for certifying --or not-- Lucinda Tate as a "Voter Owned Election" candidate...and then dispersing her funds.

Though I'm supporting Amanda, I hate to see Tate drop out of the race. I think she's the kind of new blood that needs to be brought in. But I don't see how she can be certified when its pretty obvious --OK, pretty obvious to me, at least-- that many these signatures don't pass the smell test.

I'm actually glad the PPB passed this to the AG. I don't know if I'm comfortable with the notion of the local police investigating local politicians/candidates. That premise, no matter how well-inentioned, or how clear the problem being investigated, isn't a very good one.

I've seen many an investigation come out of Salem. I've never seen one amount to much.

The fact that no one thought through how this was supposed to be handled before the "system" was adopted is nuts.

The fact that no one thought through how this was supposed to be handled before the "system" was adopted is nuts.

Seriously. It almost rises to the level of one of Condi Rice's "no one could have predicted that [insert occurance that many people had predicted]" statements. I mean, who on earth could have predicted that people might engage in some shenanigans to score themselves $150,000 in free money? Who could have forseen such a crazy thing??

"avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest."

So, he has abdicated performing his duty. Is this like resigning, sort of?

Is it a structural conflict that will always attach to such matters or is there some specific, potential conflict of particular interest to Mr. Blackmer personally? I don't think there is an exception provided in the public records law for private conflicts that prevent a public official from performing their official duties. Cool. What could it be?

Would he claim an exception because I might sue him soon? That would be funny.

Perhaps each High School can collect VOE signatures to run their favorite teacher for City Council.

The kids should be able to come up with a 1,000 five dollar bills (follow the PDC's example, and borrow it from their parent's property taxes) and lord knows it doesn't matter who signs, as long as they list a proper Portland Address with each name. No signature cards means ANYBODY can sign for ANYBODY.

Today's civics lesson: Gaming the System 101.

T-SHIRT: "Send Mr. X Educate City Hall"...

should read: SEND MR. X to Educate City Hall!

Or (if s/he's an English Teacher): Send Mrs. X to Edit City Hall!

Jack: How did those Ukrainian cocoa importers know which kind of chocolate you preferred?

Jack wrote: I've seen many an investigation come out of Salem. I've never seen one amount to much.

Don't know if Bill Sizemore would agree with your take on the facts, Jack.

Donkeys in the mist

Don't know if Bill Sizemore would agree with your take on the facts, Jack.

Zzzzzzzzzz. Hardy Myers -- enforcing a poorly drafted Portland city ordinance? Zzzzzzzzzzzz. By the time the bureaucrats figure this one out, the $150K will be in Kiev and Emilie will be in Chapter 13.

Another brilliant idea from Erik Sten and the City Club sheep. Baaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

I just got back from a candidate forum for the Concordia neighborhood at the Kennedy school. No Lister.

Isn't he supposed to be the "Eastside Guy" or something? Walk me through the strategery behind that campaign decision.

Charlie, that's off topic. Have a nice week off. Go troll somewhere else.

Tonight was Lister's long-planned campaign party on the cruise boat.

This morning's Oregonian has the alledgedly proposed contract that was offered to Bruce Broussard.


Or, if I've screwed this up again: oregonianextra.com/documents/broussard.pdf

My apologies for not getting the link right. I feel like someone doing a magic trick...voila! And nothing happens. Not so entertaining.

I'm still curious, though, whether Lucinda Tate will be certified as a Publicly Financed Candidate. The deadline is today.

I think the odds of Lucinda Tate getting VOE funds are low: the cat is out of the bag.

If they fund Tate (simply because the Boyles fraud went undetected), then they have two prosecutions in order to recoup funds.

Rock the Boat for Dave Lister was very successful too, I might add.

From the Boyles press release:

no new campaign obligations are being aquired

The campaign has asked Mr. Golovan to return funds paid to him by the campaign and to be fiscally responsible

How about "acquired" and "financially liable"?

Meanwhile...over at the Cop Shop...A woman sleeping with her boss is entitled to a cash settlement because....of what exactly?

Chief Foxworth doesn't appear to be the vindictive type, and she's still employed by the PPB. Clearly, he would have preferred to keep their relationship a secret forever....But the City refused any hush money...sooo, time to publicize the tawdry emails and see if you can get him fired.

Notably, she didn't release the hot-talk emails to the Oregonian or complain to her supervisor while she was still sleeping with the boss. Mmmm. The word opportunist comes to mind.

I think the odds of Lucinda Tate getting VOE funds are low: the cat is out of the bag.

Maybe. But the "deadline" has passed for certifying Tate...it hasn't been done --at least according to the city's website-- but the certification also hasn't been denied.

BTW...I'm sorry to see Susan Francois, the City's Elections Officer, in Willamette Week's "Rogue of the Week." Susan's one of the most honorable, and committed women I've known. I worked with her for many many years in the Auditor's Office. Which is to also say I'll never forget Auditor Blackmer telling me, back when I reported to him...and had an issue or two: "the Auditor's Office speaks with one voice...and it isn't yours!"

The irony is that City Code and Code of Ethics require us bureaucrats to report irregularities and questionable activities. There is, however, no requirement that the elected officials who you've reported these issues to respond or even acknowledge your complaint. They are, in addition, the only city employees who can not be investigated by the City Ombudsman.

Gary's analogy he's often used is that the Auditor "doesn't steer the car, but tunes the engine." Maybe that's OK, but I think the word "watchdog" also should be in there somewhere, too. Prominently. And knowing that staff can bring him issues, only to see them buried, with staff threatened or retaliated against...I'd cut Susan some slack. She deserves better than this.

The website says they have until tomorrow, April 6th: five work days after receipt of the signatures.

The website says they have until tomorrow, April 6th: five work days after receipt of the signatures.

The website says they have until tomorrow, April 6th: five work days after receipt of the signatures.

I'm sure you're right, Alice. I was mis-reading it...thinking we needed to have a decision in place tomorrow, as dawn broke. Anyway, its not like this is a homework assignment...pull an all-nighter and get it in under the wire. The issues have been out there for a few days now.

You certainly wouldn't know anything was amiss or up for discussion from the "election updates" posted on the city's --and Election Division's-- websites. Guess filing a complaint with the police isn't worth noting?

Jack, how can you on the one hand want to throw the bums out of City Hall - you support both Dave Lister and Amanda Fritz - but sophomorically defend the status quo when it comes to campaign finance? How are you going to overturn the incumbent apple cart if the same downtown interests and monied developers primarily control the financing of campaigns? The answer is - you ain't! If you doubt it, check your City Hall history. Who was the last City Council incumbent to lose an election for their own seat (remember Francesconi ran for Mayor)? That's right, Dick Bogle in 1992. Been awhile, heh Jack? Even more humorous is the hypocrisy of supporting Fritz and supporting the financing status quo. I admit Fritz is a legitimate candidate. But she would not have had a chance of mounting a serious challenge if it wasn't for VOE $$$.

Oh, bullsh*t. Look who's the mayor, and who he beat. It can be done. And with dolt incumbents like the two currently running, it should be easy.

The incumbent retention rate is the BEST reason to oppose VOE.

Why? Because VOE prevents most challengers from outspending the incumbent. As written, matching funds are made available to the general election VOE participant (read "incumbent") to dissuade non-VOE candidates from trying to outspend the VOE candidate.

Eric could take a whopping $745,000 of public funds, all the while trying to label Ginny as the dirty money stooge!

VOE prevents most challengers from outspending the incumbent.

And VOE doesn't count, oh, the $70,000 reported in Willamette Week as the Children Initiative's cost of the "Report Card" they sent out with Commissioner Saltzman's name all over it...as an "election" expense, despite being sent to...every Portland household?

VOE=Incumbent Protection

I couldn't agree more. All things equal, an incumbent who spends the same as a challenger will win almost every time precisely because of the free campaigning he or she can do (like the "Report Card").

Even if you like the notion of giving voice to the otherwise voiceless (admirable), you're still handicapping the system for the incumbent AND making it less expensive for the bigwigs. How happy is Homer to only have to spend $100 in seed money to stay in Erik's good graces?

But when is the last time a challenger to an incumbent got even close to having equal money? I agree that VOE certainly doesn't remove the advantage of incumbency, but it does narrow the gap.

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