Updated: Barnes FPPC Fine Creating Bigger Legal and Ethical Waves

Denise Barnes, Anaheim City Council

Posted is updated and edited!

Anaheim city council member Denise Barnes, a key member of the Tom Tait city council majority and a Republican recruited by Tait’s aide Mishal Montgomery, was fined $100 for a simple omission on her Form 700.  Matt Cunningham wrote about it on AnaheimBlog calling the fine the equivalent of a parking ticket. 

But upon closer examination, there’s a much bigger issue. 

Barnes recuses herself from certain votes related to Disney due to her husband’s employment.  But sources are telling TheLiberalOC that Barnes, who championed the death of the Anaheim Street Car as a principal reason for running for council, most certainly voted unethically on a number of agenda items and quite possibly broke the law in doing so. 

Anaheim’s city manager, Paul Emery, and the interim city attorney, Kristin Pelletier, now have a difficult task ahead of them – namely telling the Anaheim City Council that several votes taken by Barnes may need to be tossed out and acted on again – and in many cases, some of these items will die with a 3-3 tie. 

Here’s a sample summary of votes Barnes took that are under a cloud now because she probably should have recused herself; I did make an error in the cutting and pasting of several items that I posted too soon before verifying the votes,  but there are some votes that remain:

item 22 of the March 7 agenda and item 3 on the March 21 agenda 

In these votes, Barnes actually stated the conflict. It was these votes that caused the examination into all the other votes which may or may affect Barnes since the items voted on are within 500 feet of Disney property. I’ll note in this same agenda on March 7, Tait declared he didn’t have conflict but said he would “abstain out of an abundance of caution because there might be a potential conflict of interest.” Perhaps Councilmember Barnes should start doing the same as the Mayor. 

Additionally, per Cynthia Ward’s comments on the issue of unrelated items such as the Harbor substation (item 25 on the March 21 agenda), this substation’s primary service area is the Resort District in and around Disneyland. Any improvements to the structure may represent a conflict for Ms. Barnes and needs thorough examination by the interim city attorney. 

Dec. 20:

 

  1. Approve the engineering services agreement, with Biggs Cardosa Associates, Inc., in the amount of $204,980, for the 2016 Bridge Preventative Maintenance Program to extend the service life of nine city bridges (Tustin Avenue over the Santa Ana River; Kraemer Boulevard over the Carbon Canyon Channel; Weir Canyon Road over the Santa Ana River; Lakeview Avenue over the Santa Ana River; Crowther Avenue over the Carbon Canyon Channel; Magnolia Avenue over the UPRR; Southbound Disneyland Drive over Disneyland Park Traffic; Disneyland Flyover over Ball Road; Northbound Disneyland Drive over the Disneyland Tramway Road).

 

  1. Approve and authorize the Executive Director of the Convention, Sports & Entertainment to execute the Third Amendment to the Agreement with Audio Visual Services Group, dba PSAV Presentation Services (PSAV), any related documents, including actions necessary to implement and administer the amendment to extend the agreement one year through March 14, 2018 for the continued rights to be named the preferred audio visual service and exclusive rigging service in designated areas of the Convention Center.

 

  1. RESOLUTION NO.                               A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF ANAHEIM rescinding Resolution No. 2015-202 establishing a Hotel Incentive Program.

 

  1. Discuss and provide staff direction on a request to discontinue the Anaheim Street Car Project.  MOTION: ___________

 

January 10:

 

  1. Approve a Sub-recipient Agreement with the Anaheim Transportation Network, in the amount of $1,290,000, to provide bus shuttle service between the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center and CtrCity Anaheim for a seven year period to implement the Orange County Transportation Authority Measure M2 Project V (Community-Based Transit/Circulators) program.

 

  1. RESOLUTION NO.                               A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF ANAHEIM expressing opposition to a street car system in Anaheim.

 

January 24:

 

  1. Ratify the purchase order to Kone, Inc., in the amount of $409,537.84, for State mandated repairs to fifteen escalators at the Anaheim Convention Center and approve a master agreement increase with Kone, Inc., in the amount of $200,000, increasing the contract amount from a not to exceed amount of $350,000 to $550,000 for additional unforeseen repairs and upgrades to the elevators and escalators at the Anaheim Convention Center.

 

  1. Waive the sealed bidding requirement of Council Policy 4.0 and authorize the Purchasing Agent to issue a purchase order to Siemens Industry, Inc., in the amount of $123,230, for furnishing and installing new building automation system controllers at the Anaheim Convention Center.

 

February 28:

  1. CONFERENCE WITH REAL PROPERTY NEGOTIATORS

(Section 54956.8 of the Government Code)

Property: Parcel 3 of Parcel Map 88-251, in the City of Anaheim, County of Orange, State of California, as per map recorded in Book 233, pages 41 to 46 inclusive of Parcel Maps, in the office of the County Recorder of said county (also commonly referred to as Car Park 2 of the Anaheim Convention Center and the Hilton Self-Parking Garage).

Agency Negotiator:  Tom Morton, Executive Director of Convention, Sports and Entertainment

Negotiating Parties:  HHC HA TRS, Inc.

Under Negotiation:  Price and terms of payment for purchase and sale of property

 

  1. Approve an agreement with Nichols Consulting Engineering, in the amount of $67,300, for civil engineering services for the Citywide Pavement Management Program Update for the arterial highway system and local street system from 2017 to 2019.

 

March 7:

 

  1. CONFERENCE WITH REAL PROPERTY NEGOTIATORS

(Section 54956.8 of the Government Code)

Property: Parcel 3 of Parcel Map 88-251, in the City of Anaheim, County of Orange, State of California, as per map recorded in Book 233, pages 41 to 46 inclusive of Parcel Maps, in the office of the County Recorder of said county (also commonly referred to as Car Park 2 of the Anaheim Convention Center and the Hilton Self-Parking Garage).

Agency Negotiator:  Tom Morton, Executive Director of Convention, Sports and Entertainment

Negotiating Parties:  HHC HA TRS, Inc.

Under Negotiation:  Price and terms of payment for purchase and sale of property

 

  1. Ratify an increase to the emergency purchase order issued on December 1, 2016 to Kone, Inc., in the amount of $409,537.84 increasing the cost by $303,671.50 for a new total of $713,209.34, for an accelerated repair schedule to complete the work on the remaining escalators at the Anaheim Convention Center, as required to comply with the State deadline of March 10, 2017.

 

  1. Direct staff to seek funds from the Anaheim Tourism Improvement District Transportation Fund to cover certain costs associated with the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center annual operations.  MOTION:___________

 

March 21:

 

  1. CONFERENCE WITH REAL PROPERTY NEGOTIATORS             (Section 54956.8 of the California Government Code)

Property:  Parcel 3 of Parcel Map 88-251, in the City of Anaheim, County of Orange, State of California, as per map recorded in Book 233, pages 41 to 46 inclusive of Parcel Maps, in the office of the County Recorder of said county (also commonly referred to as Car Park 2 of the Anaheim Convention Center and the Hilton Self-Parking Garage)

Agency Negotiator:  Tom Morton, Executive Director of Convention, Sports and Entertainment

Negotiating Party:  HHC HA TRS, Inc.

Under Negotiation:  Price and terms of payment for purchase and sale of property

 

  1. Determine, on the basis of the evidence submitted by Walt Disney Parks and Resorts U.S., Inc., thatthe property owner has complied in good faith with the terms and conditions of Development Agreement No. 96-01 for the 2016 review period for the Disneyland Resort project.

 

  1. Approve an amendment to the previously approved Sub-Recipient Agreement with Anaheim Transportation Network extending the term from five to seven years ending in July 2020 for bus shuttle services between the Anaheim Canyon MetrolinkStation, CtrCity Anaheim and The Anaheim Resort which implements the Orange County Transportation Authority Measure M2 Project S program, in the total cost of up to $732,888.

 

  1. Approve a Sub-recipient Agreement with the Anaheim Transportation Network, in the amount of $1,290,000, to provide bus shuttle service between the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center and CtrCity Anaheim for a seven-year period to implement the Orange County Transportation Authority Measure M2 Project V (Community-Based Transit/Circulators) program.

 

  1. RESOLUTION NO.                               A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF ANAHEIM adopting the Mitigated Negative Declaration and Mitigation Monitoring Plan  No. 2016-005 for the Harbor Substation Project supported by those findings required by the California Environmental Quality Act.

Determine that the proposal submitted by ABB, Inc., is the most advantageous to the City of Anaheim and award ABB, Inc., the Design-Build Services Agreement, in the amount of $27,162,657, for the design and construction of the Harbor Substation Project, waive any irregularities in any of the proposal documents, authorize and direct the Public Works Director, or his designee, to execute any related documents, and authorize and direct the Finance Director to execute the Escrow Agreement pertaining to contract retentions in accordance with Public Contract Code 22300.

 

  1. ORDINANCE NO.                                 (INTRODUCTION) AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF ANAHEIM amending Chapter 15.70 of Title 15 of the Anaheim Municipal Code relating to the preservation of rental housing and motel properties in the City of Anaheim to include a citywide, Quality Motel Inspection Program 

 

So for those on the Tait council majority, is it “good government” to have a member of your majority recuse herself for so many important items in the city.  Which one of them will speak up and criticize Barnes’ votes and deception?

Should Barnes resign?  Should she be recalled?  Tait’s aide recruited Barnes as a candidate; what blame should be affixed to Ms. Montgomery, the beneficiary of a huge pay raise courtesy of Ms. Barnes vote?

The bigger question is will the city manager and city attorney – already in an adversarial relationship with Tait stand up to the Mayor to say “knowing what we know now, you need to rescind these items and vote again.”? 

It’s a much bigger deal than a $100 fine.

 

 

  6 comments for “Updated: Barnes FPPC Fine Creating Bigger Legal and Ethical Waves

  1. Brenda Ramsey
    May 17, 2017 at 6:32 pm

    Thank you for sharing this news.

    There is no doubt that these illegal votes require Denise Barnes resign from office. Her actions are criminal. Safe bet that she has hired a criminal defense attorney at this point to try to cut a deal.

    As a city employee, Mishal Montgonery should immediately be fired. Also, she should be forced to testify on her involvement in recruiting Denise Barnes.

    To quote a statement often used in criminal indictments, the public has the right to know what Mishal Montgomery knew and when she knew it.

    There is no room for criminal activity at City Hall. Both Barnes and Montgomery must be held accountable for their actions.

  2. Cynthia Ward
    May 19, 2017 at 2:17 pm

    Dan, you have listed items Barnes did not vote for. You have listed items that have no link to benefitting Disney. And you have offered no explanation to connect them to Barnes. The FPPC made th statement there was no intent to deceive, this was a mistake made by someone who had never run for office before, where was the City Attorney to walk through the new Council members? I certainly had help and training before filing my 700s and I refer back to it every time I file new ones because the pages can be difficult to discern.

    If you want to pursue Barnes for what the FPPC says was unintentional then let’s take another look at the many votes of Murray connected to WillDan and her use of her position for her employer, even after being called on it by the public. We can look good and hard at that again I guess.

    As far as any accusation that Barnes “paid back” Montgomery, please factor what Montgomery lost when the former majority stripped the Mayor of the 10th largest city in CA down to one part time staffer, are you saying the Mayor does not need one full time staff person or that the person should not have the level of experience and education that Mishal Montgomery brings to the office? Let’s talk about Steve Lodge being paid the same that Montgomery used to make, without the college degree(s) without the experience, now THAT is a political payback that should trigger outrage.

    • May 19, 2017 at 2:28 pm

      Anaheim is not a strong mayor system of government; Tait’s extra responsibilities are running the meeting and that’s pretty much it. Montgomery’s raise was excessive and given how Tait has screwed over unions in contract negotiations, it’s very inconsistent to reward Mopntgomery. I realize she’s given you special access to stuff for meetings since you are very pro-Tait; innapropriate to do for someone suing the city and losing generally. Barnes votes ought to be rescinded. Its not about Murray; it’s about Barnes. If Murray is fined by the FPPC, let me know.

    • Brenda Ramsey
      May 19, 2017 at 2:57 pm

      Yes these are issues where Denise Barnes cast votes. State law is very clear as to what conditions a conflict.

      The FPPC is soley responsible for determine if violations related to financial disclosure /. fit which they found her to have violated state law.

      Denise Barnes’ criminal activity, voting on items where state law prohibits her from voting because of financial conflicts, isn’t in the purview of the FPPC. That falls to the California Attorney General and the County District Attorney.

      No doubt Councilwoman Barnes’ lawyer will know the difference.

    • May 19, 2017 at 3:30 pm

      The forms are not difficult to fill out; I’d argue you’d have the intellect of a doorknob to not complete correctly and there’s help readily available on a question.

      Montgomery recruited a candidate who voted for her pay increase. Go ahead and defend it. It makes you look bad.

Comments are closed.