Tuesday, February 16, 2016

• Special Council Meeting: Ken Calvert 2016

This is the third such special meeting I've attended starting back in 2014. They're all about the same, but well worth going to if you have an open spot on your calendar.
Congressman Calvert, Ben Benoit, Bridgette Moore, Tim Walker, Marsha Swanson and Gary Nordquist.
Generally, the councilmembers ask questions of the congressman, and he tries to tell them what they want to hear, though most things are well beyond his doing. Or they just discuss things that are happening in the area and they chat about that.

Often the items are out of his hands. Either the concerns are state or local issues, or because there really isn't much wiggle room for a congressman to intervene in everyday matters here. 

Some of the issues I noted, that are all in the video of the complete meeting, include the following list.

•  Public Comment by George Taylor about Wildomar being forced into districts for council elections.
•  Councilmember Benoit brought up the increased crime stats. Including mail theft.
•  Mayor Moore asked about the potential for "per mile" tax over the existing gas tax.
•  Mayor Pro-Tem Walker discussed California's Bullet Train to Nowhere, aka the Browndoggle.
•  Councilmember Swanson discussed Wildomar's missing VLF funds, local control (or the lack thereof), council districting.
•  City Manager Gary Nordquist spoke about Community Development Block Grants (CDBGs).
•  Mayor Moore: federal safety grants.
•  Mayor Pro-Tem Walker: Prop 47 and if there is any federal help to alleviate the jail overcrowding.
•  Discussion about drugs and whether their use is a "victim-less crime" or not.
•  Sanctuary cities.
•  Mayor Moore: $120K fees for the Murrieta Creek and Santa Margarita watershed permits (a yearly fee that wasn't configured into the incorporation of the city).
•  Street light conversion to LEDs and if there are federal programs that could help with the costs.
•  Medical marijuana was discussed. (jump link to that part of the video). Also about having it reclassified as a prescription drug. 

The marijuana discussion was emblematic of how dysfunctional Washington DC truly has become. I don't care if it's from the left or the right,  I don't want your nanny state.

Quote of the day.
Speaking on crime and and jail overcrowding.

"Incarceration does work. People incarcerated don't commit crimes."

— Congressman Ken Calvert

The video is of the complete meeting, save an opening public comment by resident Rick Steel. It was about the help that Councilmember Swanson gave to him and he wanted to thank her. 

A fun aside is that my nephew, Jake Morabito EHS grad and valedictorian 2011, works for congressman Darrell Issa's DC office. Whenever I get to play that card, I do. 

Once the meeting had concluded I spoke to some of Calvert's staffers. I told them about Jake and they remembered him for two reasons. First, that he was hired while still finishing his final semester of college and that Issa's office hired him out from under them. They were looking to land him too.
Pretty cool when people from the east coast know a family member of yours from his good reputation.

Ben Benoit, Bridgette Moore, Ken Calvert, Marsha Swanson, Tim Walker.

Now for a bit of comic relief. 
Let's take a look at some recent silliness that appeared below a Facebook post alerting people to the City Council's Meeting with Congressman Calvert. 

Names have been changed to protect the innocent. 

It gets old reading the same BS from the same people. It's as if they go out of their way to sound like fools. Seriously, let's do the math here. 

•  First, no one attends these meetings and they aren't covered by any media outlet... unless you count this blog. Case in point, there were no more than half a dozen members of the public in attendance.

•  Second, Ken Calvert is in what's known as, a safe seat. This is a rather conservative district and unless some bombshell were to drop on Calvert, he has no reason to fear being voted out. He trounced his 2014 opponent 66% to 34%.

•  Third, if it's just a chance to "cook up issues for reelection" then why did they bother with this "dog and pony show" in a non election year... 2015 to be specific?

•  Fourth, now that we're so lucky as to have districts in Wildomar, Bridgette Moore is also in a safe seat. Only a fool of biblical proportions would actually run against such a well liked and dedicated councilmember as she.

As for councilmember Bob Cashman, he didn't even attend... (so much for cooking up issues and public appearances for his reelection.)

There goes that campaigning for reelection theory.

That makes it 0 for 3 for him attending this yearly meeting.

•  Fifth, it's pretty ironic when people that love to have the city staff running around like bees late to the sting-a-thon, with constant requests for documents and even repeated legal actions —that had been repudiated in court no less, then feign umbrage at the forty-five minutes spent by some of the city staff to attend such a meeting. 

•        •        •

If the Party could thrust its hand into the past and say of this or that event, it never happened — that, surely, was more terrifying than mere torture and death? 
— Winston Smith, 1984 (George Orwell)

Wildomar Rap reminds you: that a spoonful of medicine helps the sugar go down.

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