Opinion: A politician looking out for taxpayers – what a concept

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Far be it from me to covet someone’s domestic ambition. I’m not thrilled, though, when we have to assistance compensate for it – and I’m certain other taxpayers aren’t, either.

That’s where we are with Sacramento City Councilman Kevin McCarty, who in his second try won a chair in a state Assembly final week. He’s a former legislative consultant and has been a Capitol lobbyist for a preschool advocacy group, so in many ways, this is his dream job. Good for him.

But since McCarty is in a center of his third legislature term, that means a special choosing – scheduled for Apr 7 – is compulsory to fill his District 6 seat. Talk about a low-turnout race.

And it will cost city taxpayers about $200,000.

I consider it would be a unequivocally grand and politically intelligent gesticulate for McCarty to assistance compensate that bill.

A politician willingly looking out for taxpayers – crazy, right? It would really be rarely surprising for an inaugurated central to chip in to reason an election. It would, however, be wholly legal.

Last year, a state Fair Political Practices Commission released an recommendation minute that says regulating debate donations to defray a cost of a special choosing is an authorised “governmental purpose.”

When we lifted this probability with McCarty, let’s only contend he was not ripping with enthusiasm.

“I hadn’t suspicion about it,” he pronounced Monday. “I’ve never listened of such an arrangement.”

It would be easier if he were sitting on a accumulate of income in his debate account. McCarty had $113,000 as of Oct. 18, though he told me that he spent it all by Election Day and expects to be $75,000 in a hole when all a bills are combined up. McCarty, who will be sworn in to a Assembly on Dec. 1, says he’s going to have to lift income to settle his debate debt.

It’s also legal, however, for officials to lend their name to a nonprofit that raises income to assistance compensate for a special election, according to a FPPC.

To be fair, McCarty did advise electorate during his 2012 legislature debate that he competence not offer a full term. Serving in a Assembly, with two-year terms, is like using a incessant campaign. Part of his problem is bad timing. When Bonnie Pannell stepped down from a Sacramento City Council for health reasons in June, a legislature was means to set a special choosing to fill her chair for final week to equivocate a additional cost.

There’s positively no requirement for McCarty to do this. But we gamble he would buy a lot of goodwill from voters, and would fast mount out from a throng of new legislators. Besides, it would be a really good interruption present to his legislature colleagues and Sacramento’s taxpayers.

With a Legislature sinister by liaison and after an nauseous campaign, McCarty has a possibility to set a resplendent instance for politicians. How about it?

Follow Foon Rhee on Twitter @foonrhee.

In : Politics

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