SACRAMENTO – Business leaders have asked. Labor leaders have asked. Community leaders and even the media has asked. But Sacramento Taxpayers Opposed to Pork (STOP) has refused to disclose who is funding the paid signature campaign against the arena. Now DowntownArena.org is asking the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) to investigate STOP and the Orange County political action committee that is bankrolling their effort to kill the proposed downtown arena.
“I would like to know what is the price tag for ‘fellow Sacramentans’ (STOP) to sell out 4,000 jobs. and to whom they sold out”, queried Kevin Ferreira, Political Director for the Central Labor Council. “The first step towards prosperity is jobs.”
In a complaint filed this morning, Josh Wood, Executive Director of Region Builders made it clear that he believes there is enough evidence to support an investigation of STOP and/or Taxpayers for Safer Neighborhoods whom may have violated one or more campaign finance laws in an attempt to avoid disclosing their donors.
Wood writes in the complaint, “Sacramentans deserve to know who is paying for this anti-arena campaign and the motivation behind their effort to stop the creation of 4,000 jobs. You have to ask yourself, why is it so important to them for their funding source to be kept a secret?”
The 39 page complaint then goes on to outline the foundation for the complaint and need for investigation in significant detail. It includes a copy of a check from signed by Monica Harris of Momentum Political Services which was cut for gathering signatures. Additionally, the complaint included a signed letter from another petitioner stating that they had received payment for collecting petitions for the anti-arena campaign in June of 2013. Finally, it contains a copy of the finance reports for both the above mentioned groups, neither of which includes payments made to vendors like the one outlined in the compliant.
Finally, the complaint asks the FPPC to help answer three main questions:
1. Who is funding the Orange County group?
2. How much is the Orange County group funding to STOP and their allies?
3. Why is the Orange County group involved in a Sacramento issue?
DowntownArena.org Founder, Mike Tavares points out that this is about more than just the arena project. It’s about the integrity of the process. “When will STOP be open and transparent themselves? Whatever little credibility they had is gone as they continue to not be open and transparent on where their funding is coming from.