Rexford Apologists More Concerned about Disclosure than What is Right

Barry Jantz Barry Jantz Leave a Comment

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Saturday’s Union-Trib editorial “Rexford Must Go” (posted below) was spot on, while alluding to SD Rostra’s role — via my post — in releasing the smoking gun memo sent by the Poway city manager to Councilwoman Betty Rexford in 2006.  Some of the resulting comments on the U-T website are a testimony to the “hide the facts” attitude of Rexford and her apologists.  They are very concerned with how a “private” memo got in the hands of anyone outside the city.  It’s amazingly telling, how little regard her minions have for the public being provided anything.

This exchange says it all…

How did a former La Mesa Councilman get a Poway memo marked “confidential”?  I’d really like to know. (Posted by TheObserver2)

Simple answer – virtually all documents are available through a Public Records Request. Jantz got the docs from the Recall team – we had heard a rumor about their existence, made a request, got them and made them public. (Posted by Steve Vaus, www.recallrexford.com)

Mr. Vaus is correct…a public document is a public document. The fact that I am a former La Mesa councilman is really quite irrelevant to the editorial, however. I edit and write for a local political website, www.sdrostra.com, where a number of contributors follow local affairs. This is one of them. (Posted by Barry Jantz)

No, you are wrong, wrong, wrong!!! The letters were not public documents they were in the City Manager, Rod Gould’s private file in his office. And, You better believe that no one had access to those files unless he retrived the files himself. (Posted by ydal.)

You being right, right, right would start with an understanding of what constitutes a public document. Stamping confidential on a document doesn’t necessarily make it private. For a primer, read the California Brown Act. This memo does not meet the exception rules. Yes, of course the city manager released the memo, since it would be a violation of the law to not do so. Yes, anyone who asks for such a document under the law is afforded access to it, as did Mr. Vaus and the Union-Trib. But, all of this begs a question…why are you so caught up in how the memo got out there and who got it, instead of its contents? Is this about hiding pertinent information or about doing the right thing? (Posted by Jantz)

Wow, “ydal” – Sure sounds like the release of those docs has got you feeling a bit uncomfortable! I would think anyone who really cares about Poway (or any municipality for that matter) would be anxious for the truth and facts to be revealed. You do want the public to know the truth, right “ydal”? (Posed by Vaus)

Here, too, is the original UT editorial

Rexford must go

More examples emerge of her misconduct

Day by day, new allegations emerge of misconduct by embattled Poway Councilwoman Betty Rexford.

The latest is that in September 2006, Rexford tried to influence city staff on behalf of her real estate client in violation of the Political Reform Act, the Poway Code of Ethics and a council resolution. Poway City Manager Rod Gould had a private meeting with Rexford to tell her what she should have learned years before. When Rexford persisted, even berating staff members that night, Gould wrote a memo of rebuke, which was made public this week by former La Mesa Councilman Barry Jantz. It was not known how Jantz obtained the memo.

Add this to the city having to pay a $360,000 settlement, plus $40,000 from Rexford’s personal insurance company, for her inappropriate contacts with the city in a dispute with neighbors. Then there are allegations, supported by Fire Department logs and statements of now-retired fire officials, that rigs were pulled out of service and assigned to guard the Rexfords’ home even as they were needed elsewhere.

Let’s not forget four council colleagues calling upon Rexford to resign, or an active recall drive with hundreds of Poway residents taking out petitions. If enough signatures are turned in, voters will decide the question next June.

Rexford has rambling answers to all of this: The city manager doesn’t like her and neither does the council. She didn’t want to settle, she doesn’t know how the fire trucks got there, and why can’t a real estate agent influence the city? She’s only staying on so the city will have an elected replacement, not an appointee.

Rexford has become an embarrassment to the city. In this sorry melodrama of the Rexfords against the world, Betty Rexford has lot sight of political reality.

For what remains of her credibility and her reputation, and for the good of her city, Rexford should resign immediately.

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