Observations on the Irvine Race

I haven’t been particularly happy with our school board since they screwed John Burger over in 2004.  So a polite congratulations to Sharon Wallin and Gavin Huntlely-Fenner on their victories and a reminder that John Burger still got more votes than either of the winners on election day.

I’m thrilled with Beth Krom’s overwhelming re-election.  She has done a great job as mayor.  The Republican candidate, John Duong, raised more money than she did and most of it from outside Irvine.  Voters rejected the divisive politics from Team Irvine and negative press from Steven Greenhut and Frank Mickadict.  Greenhut opening wondered why Beth Krom was the mayor of a major city.  Frank called the race between Duong and Krom a “battle for the free world.”  Voters are smarter than that.  I am taking particular glee in the overwhelming rejection of candidates and initiatives supported by Mr. Greenhut.

But my Republican friends can no longer blame a rouge conservative candidate for stealing votes from the lead Republican candidate.  And Beth won by the same margin Chuck DeVore did in his re-election to assembly.  Irvine is a Purple city my friends, with a deeper shade of blue.

On the council race, Christina Shea led the pack proving she still has the power of personal popularity working for her.  I wish her the best of luck in winding down her lobbying business as in 2007, she will not be able to be a practicing lobbyist and a city councilor or she risks sanctions for violating the city’s ethics ordinance which she voted against twice (BTW, police officers and fire fighters are not eligible to hold office in Irvine, so I don’t have a problem denying lobbyists from holding elective office). By running, and winning, I am sure she’ll honor her committment to voters by shutting down her consulting business. And she owes an apology to the ICEA president Kevin Moynihan.

If she doesn’t, she should be kicked out.

 Sukhee Kang and John Duong proved one thing; raising lots of money doesn’t guarantee a victory.  Sukhee barely made it.

 

 

  13 comments for “Observations on the Irvine Race

  1. Adam D. Probolsky
    November 9, 2006 at 12:16 am

    Lets be clear. Cops and firefighters can be council members in Irvine. Its city employees such as a police officer or defacto employees like a OC Fire Authority firefighter who cannot be on the council.

    There is a big difference.

  2. Dan Chmielewski
    November 9, 2006 at 9:15 am

    Not really; I was referring to Irvine PD but probably should have been more clear. All the same, lobbyists have no place holding public office.

  3. Jubal
    November 9, 2006 at 4:10 pm

    Adam is right — that is a huge difference.

    It’s wrong to bar a person from holding office simply because of their occupation — I’m stunned to see a professed liberal advocating for such discrimination.

    Barring an employee of a city from being a councilman for that city is an exception, because such a situation is contains an intrinsic conflict-of-interest. But that is not the case with a lobbyist. That’s self-interested Agran nonsense.

  4. Christina Shea
    November 9, 2006 at 5:35 pm

    Let’s be clear larry Agran created the Lobbyist section of the Irvine Ethics ordinance, supported by Beth Krom and Sukhee Kang, in my opinion, to silence me and my opposition to their politics.

    I respect a man or woman that works hard for a living and then spends his or her spare time serving their community… this is what our City Charter suggests.

    Who will Larry, Beth and Sukhee go after next? Who will be required to wear the Scarlett Letter? And what profession will they add to their “unethical, ethics ordinance?

    And who annointed them to be the higher power to set the rules for what is ethical and not ethical in Irvine?

    This behavior is not liberal or ethical..it is calculated, discriminatory, and hateful…
    and you would agree if you lived thru the last four weeks of smear mail sent out to our residents to silence me…thank goodness so many know and love me in Irvine.

    We should all be outraged to these officials behavior …using City ordinances to discriminate against hard working poeple…so they deem certain individuals unfit for public office is outrageous

    Perhaps we should add those unemployed next to the list of categories for exclusion for public office in Irvine?

  5. Christina Shea
    November 9, 2006 at 5:51 pm

    I failed to mention, that it has been opined by our City Attorney months ago that I am not a lobbyist.

  6. Anon Y. Mous
    November 9, 2006 at 9:55 pm

    Ms. Shea –

    I am very confused, if you are not a lobbyist, and the ethics ordinance wouldn’t affect you, how can it possibly be a personal attack on you?

    Additionally, if the ordinance wouldn’t affect you, why did you change your website immediately after it passed, taking down the statement that you represent businesses in front of government agencies “for corporate benefit.”

    Before ethics ordinance:
    http://web.archive.org/web/20050206214251/christinashea.com/services.html

    After:
    http://christinashea.com/services.html

  7. not for sale
    November 10, 2006 at 9:44 am

    Yeah,

    this part about government relations is disturbing, it smacks of legislation for sale:

    Thanks for the post anon.

  8. not for sale
    November 10, 2006 at 9:45 am

    Yeah,

    this part about government relations is disturbing, it smacks of legislation for sale:

    Government relations’ services include the capablilty to manage project applications for General Plan Amendments, Zone Changes, EIR review, Tenative Tract Map, Master Plan and CUP review. We perform community relationship management and negotiations to achieve community consensus for corporate benefit. Also, Shea Consulting provides project visuals and presentations for elected officials, commissioners, public hearings, and community meetings.

    Thanks for the post anon.

  9. Christina Shea
    November 10, 2006 at 10:12 am

    It is and was a personal attack on me, and an attack on your person that is dishonest, you will defend.

    My website was created appx 6 years ago, when I was out of office. I was needing to build a business and to make money, I am not a rich woman.

    I first decided to create a business that I could outsource some of my work. I do not know how to provide entitlement services ..it was always intended to be outsourced to a firm that did this work and I would focus on political consulting. Then no one called me for any of these services, except for political consulting and so I decided to get my real estate license as I needed to make money to pay my bills

    Eventually I changed the site information to reflect what I do and have done in the past.

    I should not be facing this WITCH TRIAL for working hard..and honestly.

    It may be more valuable now since some of Larry’s friends want to cleanse City Hall thru these ” WITCH HUNT” activities to focus their attention now on the incomes of Beth Krom and Sukhee Kang who work full time at City Hall and do not have any employment and their mates do not work. Now that really has raised some curious questions and eyebrows in the ethics community.. How are they paying their bills?

    This seems like the logical next step and mission for the “Agran Witch Hunt Society” They should be fair and objective and take this investigation down the dais, like true liberals!

    By the way, who is the “Honorary Grand Marshall of Mr Agran’s Witch Hunt Society?
    Will he/she be leading the investigation and posting the results of the ongoing “HUNT” of the KROM/KANG trial?

  10. Dan Chmielewski
    November 10, 2006 at 11:45 am

    “By the way, who is the “Honorary Grand Marshall of Mr Agran’s Witch Hunt Society?”
    Whoa – kinda of black helicopter comment if I ever saw one. And Ms. Shea, our Witch Hunt Society Meetings are held Wednesday nights ;) (LOLOLOL)

    Let’s backtrack a bit — for Matt/election laws have all sorts of restrictions on who is eligible to hold office. In Irvine, there’s an ethics ordinance that says a lobbyist can’t hold a council seat. Since holding a council seat is a privledge and not a right, to hold it, one must adhere to local law. I think there is a slippery slope between “government relations” and “lobbying,” but that’s not for me to decide. And I haven’t seen any ruling from the city atty’s on Ms. Shea’s status as a lobbyist or not; based on the sort of work she says she does, one could reasonably conclude that there’s lobbying going on. Tough one.

    And for Ms. Shea: “We should all be outraged to these officials behavior …using City ordinances to discriminate against hard working people.”

    http://www.awgpac.com/bbs/messages/1/89.html?1030064030

    “1988, Agran’s human rights commission drew up an ordinance banning discrimination in employment and housing on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, sexual preference, or physical handicap…Members of a group called the Irvine Values Coalition thought the law legitimized an immoral lifestyle, and they collected signatures to put Measure N on the November 1989 ballot, to repeal the explicit protection of homosexuals.

    “I’m a mom with three kids and I don’t want gay pride festivals or public sex in bathrooms in my city,” said Christina Shea, leader of the coalition. “I’m not on a crusade to wipe out homosexuals, but I’ll fight if they want to bring homosexuality into the public arena.”

    Now I understand you’ve changed your tune since then, per Mitch, but at the same time, isn’t this the pot calling the kettle black? Wasn’t new legislation used to hurt working people here?

    BTW, you should go to a Gay Pride Parade someday; it’s humbling to see so many people who are just like you and me except for their sexuality. They are also a lot of fun.

    Lastly, as Matt has pointed out before, politics is a contact sport. You have clearly demonstrated that you can dish it out so you should be able to take it.

    And while you acknowledge the love and support from many in Irvine, perhaps you should also acknowledge that Ms. Krom has as much love and support from city residents as well. Thanks for reading the blog.

  11. Christina Shea
    November 10, 2006 at 1:30 pm

    Your efforts and Mr Agran’s efforts are to create a law to try and silence my opposition and others to his continual shenanigans..

    Mr Agran has many friends that lobby the City and he seems content to allow them to work as elected officals let’s take Roger Faubel for one..he is a lobbyist and has been an elected offical and is presently, so is Curt Pringle, but Larry allows them to bring clients or potential projects to Irvine and he supports their efforts..are you investigating Roger and Curt and trying to get them out of public service?

    The Lobbying Ordinance was structured to try and defeat me in my re-election all political manuevering, there is no punitive results to anyone serving on the Council and being a Lobbyist in OC. Just a talking to by the City Attorney and no legal consequences to it.

    The City Attorney opinion and a conclusion from my meeting with the ACLU concluded this as well. It is all politically motivated you know this very well.

    There are laws on the books that already establish rules for business dealings with your local communities if you are an elected offical.

    The law only restricts a person from running for office based on a few criteria…age . residency and if you have a felony conviction. This is to encourage not discourage people for running for public office…if you have a conflict you cannot vote on an item.

    Larry Agran has big stock in Bank of America and the City does business with Bank of America so every two weeks he has to abstain on this item

    Maybe Dan, you should ask us to amend the ethics ordinance to require electeds to resign if they have financial business interests with companies that the City does business with? How do we know his presence on the Council is not having an financial positive affect for B of A? We don’t know so maybe you can add this to your investigative efforts on your Wednesday night “Witch Hunt Agenda” as well I still am waiting to see the results of the Krom Kang investigation

    So now you want to find a way to outlaw me because I work with business as a consultant. gee.. Dan when does this ever stop?

    I am working to make more positive changes to our community.. this may be something you may want to do someday how about closing up your “Witch Hunt Committee” and do something grand for your world?

  12. Dan Chmielewski
    November 10, 2006 at 2:13 pm

    ***A point by point below***
    Your efforts and Mr Agran’s efforts are to create a law to try and silence my opposition and others to his continual shenanigans..

    +++I am not an elected official and can enact no law; I was a Homeowner’s Association President for 8 years; shananigans are a two way street aren’t they?+++

    Mr Agran has many friends that lobby the City and he seems content to allow them to work as elected officals let’s take Roger Faubel for one..he is a lobbyist and has been an elected offical and is presently, so is Curt Pringle, but Larry allows them to bring clients or potential projects to Irvine and he supports their efforts..are you investigating Roger and Curt and trying to get them out of public service?
    +++none of these people you mention are members of the Irvine City Council++++

    The Lobbying Ordinance was structured to try and defeat me in my re-election all political manuevering, there is no punitive results to anyone serving on the Council and being a Lobbyist in OC. Just a talking to by the City Attorney and no legal consequences to it.

    +++You’re right; the ordiance isn’t strong enough; their should be legal consequences to it; what’s the penalty for admonishing the head of the ICEA for endorsing the other side on city time? Better still, what if Agran had made the call?+++

    The City Attorney opinion and a conclusion from my meeting with the ACLU concluded this as well. It is all politically motivated you know this very well.
    +++Glad to see you’re using the ACLU; I’m a card-carrying member+++

    There are laws on the books that already establish rules for business dealings with your local communities if you are an elected offical.+++And loopholes abound, don’t they?+++

    The law only restricts a person from running for office based on a few criteria…age . residency and if you have a felony conviction. This is to encourage not discourage people for running for public office…if you have a conflict you cannot vote on an item.+++Precisely my point; there are restrictions to running for office+++

    Larry Agran has big stock in Bank of America and the City does business with Bank of America so every two weeks he has to abstain on this item+++which means what exactly? Sounds like abstraining is entirely appropriate+++

    Maybe Dan, you should ask us to amend the ethics ordinance to require electeds to resign if they have financial business interests with companies that the City does business with? How do we know his presence on the Council is not having an financial positive affect for B of A?++you’re not serious; B of A is huge and any impact Agran’s presence on the council might hold is nothing more than a blip on their balance sheet+++ We don’t know so maybe you can add this to your investigative efforts on your Wednesday night “Witch Hunt Agenda” as well I still am waiting to see the results of the Krom Kang investigation
    +++I was kidding about Wednesday nights. It’s Thursday’s actually ;). Again, I am not on the city council. Why don’t you propose this amendment?+++

    So now you want to find a way to outlaw me because I work with business as a consultant. gee.. Dan when does this ever stop?+++I only want the law followed; how its intrepreted and enforced is not my decision.+++

    I am working to make more positive changes to our community.. this may be something you may want to do someday how about closing up your “Witch Hunt Committee” and do something grand for your world? +++My committee of one; te-he. OK, since moving to Irvine, I have been a youth soccer coach (5 years now), I am a youth soccer commissioner (3 years now), I have been an HOA president (8 years), a baskeball coach and commission (4 years and 3 years respectively, not including this year), a cub scout den leader (2 years), a cub scout cubmaster (1 year), a Swim Team volunteer (5 years), a member of two technology BoDs, and a middle school legislative action rep (two years). In fact, I am conacted regularly by the Irvine Company on briefings for new community developments as they have identified me as “a community leader.” None of these activities benefit my own business,but my kids seem to like the fact I’m involved in things that matter to them. Are those contributions to the community positive enough for you?

    We clearly different ideas about what constitutes positive change for the community. Have a great time at the IRC volunteer appreciation party.

  13. Anon Y. Mous
    November 10, 2006 at 7:37 pm

    “I first decided to create a business that I could outsource some of my work. I do not know how to provide entitlement services ..it was always intended to be outsourced to a firm that did this work…”

    So you didn’t plan on doing the work yourself, but still were intending to profit from it? That doesn’t make you look better, just less capable.

    It sounds like you were just marketing your position as an elected, and selling off the clients. But of course you still market your position as an elected -
    From your website:
    “Christina has served more than 15 years in political office,” “As Irvine’s Mayor and City Councilwoman for more than a decade, I have received several acknowledgements for the public service I have provided to the Orange County community.”

    That’s real classy.

    BTW, I totally believe that you were intending to outsource the government relations aspect of it, just like I’m sure you do now with IT services. Looking at a nonfunctioning “contact us page,” http://christinashea.com/contactus.html, it seems likely your HTML skills aren’t quite up to snuff either.

    “It may be more valuable now since some of Larry’s friends want to cleanse City Hall thru these ” WITCH HUNT” activities to focus their attention now on the incomes of Beth Krom and Sukhee Kang who work full time at City Hall and do not have any employment and their mates do not work. Now that really has raised some curious questions and eyebrows in the ethics community.. How are they paying their bills? ”

    Are you accusing them of taking bribes? You act like a complete victim, lashing out at everyone. This includes people who’ve been supportive of you, like Mayor Pringle. All this personal affront at ethics inquiries, me thinks the lady doth protest too much.

    Also, where is the “ethics community.” Is that the new Irvine Company development next to Woodbury, or down by Quail Hill?

    Since we’ve apparently got you on the line Christina, I was curious, did you catch any slack about accidentally reporting the 20-odd Irvine Company executives who gave your campaign $99 contributions? I say accidentally because giving right below the $100 reporting threshold, I’m sure they meant to keep their contributions secret. Secretly receiving donations far in excess of the campaign contribution limit, it may be business as usual, but it’s still shady.

    “The City Attorney opinion and a conclusion from my meeting with the ACLU concluded this as well.”

    The city attorney opinion you didn’t read before discussion of the ethics ordinance because you were afraid of its contents?

    Also, who did you talk to at the ACLU. I know some people there, it would be good to get their perspective on the matter.

    “Larry Agran has big stock in Bank of America and the City does business with Bank of America so every two weeks he has to abstain on this item”

    Larry abstains from voting on a decision in which he might have a financial interest, so what. That is what you are supposed to do in such a situation. The city of Irvine is pretty big and it has a lot of business. If you banned any elected from having a financial interest in a company in Irvine, no one would qualify.

    All this being said, I still don’t believe that the Irvine ethics ordinance is necessarily good from a policy perspective. It seems likely constitutional, but I think that having people abstain from decisions in which they have an interest and not lobby the city or projects having a direct effect in the city (OCTA projects within Irvine for example), should be sufficient. Larry, Suhkee, and Beth clearly feel different, and I can understand why with so much back-scratching in all levels of politics. But I think people like Pringle bring a lot to their cities, perhaps more because of their other activities, and that’s what is most important to me in an elected, their ability to serve their constituents.

    I think it is a lot more troublesome when elected do use their power, voting or otherwise, to advance personal matters, and not just financial ones. Some elected have been known to use their position to bully others. Perhaps to get a $17 parking ticket cancelled because they were too lazy to walk from their assigned parking spot? Hypothetically of course. Or leaving threatening voice mails to city employees due to a family member’s legal problems? If such things were to happen, I would believe them to be improper.

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