Friday, August 15, 2008
San Diego City’s Ethics Commission has slapped fines on two city officials for soliciting campaign contributions from city employees. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.
The first fine goes to Carl Demaio, who won a seat on the city council to represent Mira Mesa and Rancho Bernardo. Demaio will pay $15 hundred for emailing 90 city employees, to invite them to a fundraiser at his home.
Stacey Fullhorst of the Ethics Commission says, though the fine is not large, the principal is important.
Fullhorst: It’s intended to ensure that people who are office holders or potential office holders are not using the power of their positions to make city employees feel obligated to give them money for their campaigns.
Fullhorst says Demaio agreed not to accept anything from the employees who received his email.
The city’s ethics laws allow city employees to contribute to candidates of their choice but candidates cannot solicit their money.
Richard Geisler of the city's South East Development Corporation will also pay a $500 fine for inviting SEDC President Carolyn Smith to a fundraiser he was hosting for city council candidate, Marti Emerald.
The fines come as a busy city election season is underway for three city council seats and city attorney.
Alison St John. KPBS news.