Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Foothill Cities Balance

I've been meaning to correct this one for a while now. Regarding the entire Congressman Miller scandal and the city of Monrovia, in an old post I picked up on an La-La Times article claiming that Mayor Hammond asked for a nice, national political appointment from the Congressman. I've never seen anything wrong with what the City of Monrovia did, and I wouldn't even be that upset [more bemused] if Hammond had asked for a sweet appointment [this is politics, people].

But, all that being said, the city of Monrovia addressed this specific issue on their website:

Was there was some kind of "trade off between with the Mayor and Congressman Miller for a seat on the National Park System Advisory Board.

Absolutely not.

This comes directly from the Los Angeles Times, and it's wrong.

"...while Miller was urging the city of Monrovia to buy his property he tried to secure an appointment for one of Monrovia's city council members, Robert Hammond, to the National Park System Advisory Board, a prestigious advisory panel that makes policy recommendations. But there were no open positions on the board at the time."

Several years ago, Mayor Rob Hammond asked a simple question while in conversation with Rep. Miller and his staff: Is there a federal parks and recreation organization, similar to such departments in local communities, that is involved with National Forest land? The Mayor's interest stemmed from the proximity of the Angeles National Forest to Monrovia's northern boundary and the threat of fire from that direction. Rep. Miller's office, in response, sent Mayor Hammond information on the National Park System Advisory Board. Mayor Hammond reports that he read the document, determined that the Board was not a parks and recreation group and, further, that neither he nor anyone he knew was qualified for a post on that board. He tossed the information and forgot about it.

If it comes to believing Monrovia or the La-La Times, I think I'm leaning with Monrovia and the very patient Mayor Hammond. Watch his interview with Ralph Walker, as well as Walker's other interviews with Monrovia candidates.

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