I almost let this slip by. A bit of the Palo Alto Post article I posted up was missing the other day. I was sent the missing piece and almost forgot to address this rather shocking statement by the incumbent sheriff.
After all the questions and concerns about Aldon Smith being on the range, shooting guns and using the taxpayer funded helicopter to fly a suspected felon around, our incumbent sheriff has a new story.
It went from an interview with NBC where she invited him and “it was wonderful and she would do it again,” to this latest where she “didn’t know in advance that Aldon Smith was going to be at the June 15, 2013 fundraiser.”
Seriously? So who is in charge of making sure that the publicly paid for law enforcement facilities are being used appropriately and people who should be excluded aren’t being invited to these events?
Does the Sheriff just get a call from Mr. Campagna saying “We’re going to use the range to have a party” and she says okay and that’s it?
Is this what passes for the responsible oversight that goes into ensuring law enforcement facilities, resources and personnel are appropriately protected and managed?
How about a little transparency here — if this was a fundraiser, by the Sheriff’s Advisory Board, presumably to support the Sheriff’s Office — how much was raise and what was that money donated too a year later? If the SAB has the freedom to use any facilities and resources they want, without oversight, to fundraise… what are the taxpayers getting out of these events? It took 5 months of investigating by news organizations and others to discover what happened — should there be private fundraisers under the guise of being to support the Sheriff’s Office, using taxpayer funded resources with no disclosure that there was an event or how that money is being allocated? It may be legal, but is this ethical? I suspect even our incumbent doesn’t believe it’s ethical or she wouldn’t have worked so hard to hide it, then defend it and now find excuses to try and avoid responsibility.
I personally do not believe for a second that Laurie Smith “didn’t know” that the 49er’s were going to be there. I personally do not believe that she wasn’t sure she talked to him because reports are that she absolutely was fawning over and following around several members of the 49er’s team.
It’s really such a simple thing — admit you did it, admit you knew about it, give clarity to the fundraising practices of the Sheriff’s Advisory Board and account for where that money ends up. This would have been a dead story. Instead we get the movie where we get to choose the ending because we have an incumbent sheriff who can’t even give us the respect of being honest with even the most simple responses to our most basic questions.
Danny Aulman writes in support of the sheriff that he doesn’t understand why we need change, it’s been the same for 40 years, therefore we should vote for the incumbent. I would say that anyone who has been following the negligent leadership of this office and questionable associations of this incumbent for any period of time should find it very easy to understand why change is needed.