We’re still only hearing crickets from the Orange County Register headquarters, at the corner of Grand Avenue and Fruit Street in Santa Ana, on the matter of the incomplete feasibility study that the Clerk-Recorder contracted with Anaheim City Councilman Jordan Brandman to provide more than a year ago. Lucky for the the Orange County taxpayers, Voice of OC reporter Adam Elmahrek is still digging into the story. In a follow-up to his series, Elmahrek reports today that the County Counsel’s office has sent a letter to Brandman demanding that he either turn in the final report or issue a refund of the $24,000 that he has already been paid.
“Immediately finalize the facility needs assessment for the County Clerk Recorder on the viability of opening a West County branch office as required under the above-referenced contract or return the $24,000 paid to you under the contract without delay,” read the March 15, 2013 letter from Supervising Deputy Anne E. Fletcher on Chrisos’ behalf.
Elmahrek has found additional sections of Brandman’s draft report that appear to have been lifted verbatim from reports prepared by another consultant. Read more here.
Our focus today however is on the continuing saga of the lack of any coverage by the Orange County Register news team on this story, which was mentioned several times during the last Board of Supervisors meeting. Our count of the number of days that the Orange County Register has avoided afflicting the Anaheim council member with negative coverage since news of the no-bid contract which is incomplete, and now reportedly plagiarized from another consultant’s report and Wikipedia. It is not insignificant that $24,000 has been paid, apparently under the direction of former Clerk-Recorder Tom Daly, for a “draft” report which no knowledgeable observer could possibly find any substance or value for the taxpayers.
We cannot understand why the Orange County Register’s Watchdogs are not all over this story. We stand by our assertion that this is what happens when a Publisher tells his newsroom staff that they should not be in the business of “afflicting the comfortable.” We’ll keep running our “Days Without Afflicting” counter on our side-bar until we read coverage of this story in the OC Register.