By Mark Gutglueck
As governmental entities within San Bernardino County go, the West Valley Water District lags well behind more than two score of others in terms of the depth and breadth of its charter, its areas of responsibility, the range of the service it provides, its budget, the number of employees and its overall assets. All 24 of the county’s cities, the county itself, a dozen-and-a-half school districts and a handful of other water districts and an equal number of college districts can lay claim to greater assets and more employees than West Valley, which nonetheless represents a significant operation consisting of 17 active wells, 25 reservoirs 360 miles of pipeline, and five treatment plants, involving 20,000 service connections to serve approximately 66,000 residents living in portions of Fontana, Rialto, the unincorporated San Bernardino County community of Bloomington and a small portion of northern Riverside County.
Despite the district’s relatively modest numbers and the consideration that local governmental board races are officially classified as non-partisan ones, politics in the West Valley Water District is as intense and more sharply fought over than anywhere else in the county. Indeed, as one of the last remaining districts in San Bernardino County in which its elections are held in odd-numbered years, those contests have evolved into brutal proving grounds for the far more significant electoral battle fought in even-numbered years that correspond to the national presidential election, during which the county supervisor overseeing the Fifth District is chosen. The Fifth District comprises most of Fontana, all of Rialto, all of Bloomington, all of Colton and the western portion of San Bernardino.
Curiously, though the population within the geographical boundaries of the West Valley Water District leans heavily toward the Democratic Party, four-fifths of its board members are Republicans. The current Fifth District Supervisor, Josie Gonzales, who has held that post since 2004 and must leave office next year as a consequence of term limits, is the only Democrat on the board of supervisors at present.
Between the mid-1960s and 2009, registered Republicans in San Bernardino County outnumbered registered Democrats. Throughout that era, Republicans dominated politics at the local level. Despite the number of registered Democrats eclipsing the number of registered Republicans within the county a decade ago, Republicans have continued to hang onto control of the county’s governmental institutions. In addition to four of the five county supervisors be adherents to the Party of Lincoln, in seventeen of the county’s 24 municipalities, Republicans outnumber or equal Democrats on those city or town councils. Republicans outnumber Democrats on the boards of the lion’s share of the county’s water and school districts, with Democratic majorities on those panels only in major Democratic strongholds.
Republicans have consistently evinced a higher degree of participation in San Bernardino County’s elections than Democrats, turning up in greater percentages at the polls on election day and casting mail-in ballots in greater numbers, as well. In addition, the Republican Party in San Bernardino County through its central committee has proven far more sophisticated, coordinated and energetic than its Democratic counterpart, investing a far more substantial amount of money in promoting its party’s standard bearers than its rival.
Countywide, as of this week, of the county’s 1,002,804 registered voters, the Democrats held what appeared to be a substantial advantage, with 397,346 or 39.6 percent of the county’s voters affiliated with their party, well ahead of the Republicans, whose ranks numbered 288,353 or 28.8 percent. Only somewhat less numerous than Republicans in the county are registered voters who declined to declare an identification with any political party, 250,185 or 24.9 percent. The more obscure parties such as the American Independent Party, the Peace and Freedom Party, the Green Party and the Libertarian Party collectively accounted for 66,920 voters or 6.67 percent.
That the Republicans are in control of the West Valley Water District’s elected offices is remarkable from the standpoint that they are outnumbered by the Democrats in the district by a ratio of more than two-and-a-half to one. Of the West Valley’s 39,829 total voters, 19,307 or 48.5 percent are Democrats and 7,704 or 19.3 percent are Republicans. Of note is that within the jurisdictional boundaries of the West Valley Water District voters unaligned with any party, 10,526 or 26.4 percent, outnumber Republicans. Despite those numbers, current Board President Mike Taylor and board members Cliff Young, Greg Young and Kyle Crowther are Republicans. Board Member Don Olinger is the sole Democrat on the board.
Despite, or maybe even because of, the GOP’s domination of the district, the West Valley Water District in the last year or so has proven out as the scene of more Republican on Republican political violence than any place else in San Bernardino County and perhaps even the State of California or the entire nation. With the district’s November 5 election approaching, that mayhem is nearing a crescendo. All of this is occurring in defiance of the 11th Commandment, which was tacked onto the original ten by the great Republican prophet Ronald Reagan: “Thou shalt not speak ill of a fellow Republican.”
The pantheon of Republican demigods that lead the West Valley Water District are impressive. The longest-serving among the four is the venerable Dr. Clifford Young, who can lay claim to be either the leading African-American Republican, or among the top two or three African American Republicans, in San Bernardino County. Born in Midland, Texas, Clifford Odell Young, Sr. moved to California at the age of 15, graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in Los Angeles and then California Baptist College in Riverside, where in what he now considers to have been an act of youthful indiscretion he hooked up with the Democrats and formed a group called the Riverside Young Democrats. Following his graduation he went to work for the Shell Oil Company. By the early 1970s he had obtained a masters degree in divinity, was ordained as a minister and converted to Republicanism, running for Congress in 1976, gaining the GOP nomination for the 32nd Congressional District but losing in the general election. In 1980, he was appointed by the Reagan Administration to the post of deputy director of minority business in the Department of Commerce. He thereafter spent the next seven years as the pastor of the Hope Presbyterian Church and in 1989 began his career as an educator when he joined the faculty of Cal State San Bernardino, teaching public administration and business, rising to become head of the department.
In 2004, Young was selected to serve as Fifth District San Bernardino County Supervisor when Jerry Eaves, a Democrat, was removed from office as the consequence of his prosecution on political corruption charges. Young did not seek election at the end of that term but remained at Cal State San Bernardino as a professor and special assistant to the college president.
In 2013, Clifford Young reentered politics in earnest when he ran for a post on the West Valley Water District Board of Directors. In doing so, he succeeded and struck a blow for the Republican Party, displacing Don Olinger, a long-serving Democrat on the board.
In 2015 Greg Young, who is no blood relation to Clifford Young, a longtime member of the Republican Central Committee, was elected to the water board. That same year, Olinger staged a comeback, succeeding in his bid for election.
In 2017, Clifford Young threw his support behind Dr. Mike Taylor, a law enforcement professional who had risen to the pinnacle of his profession when he obtained the position of police chief in Baldwin Park. A political neophyte and a Republican, Taylor emerged victorious in the race, as did Clifford Young in his reelection bid. Also successful in an accompanying race that year for a two-year term that was necessitated by the resignation of Board Member Alan Dyer who had most recently been reelected in 2015 was Kyle Crowther, another Republican who had the assistance of Cliff Young in the form of shared electioneering resources, along with the backing of the crucial elements of Fontana’s Republican political machine, Fontana Mayor Acquanetta Warren, Fontana city councilmen Jesse Armendarez and John Roberts, as well as Fontana political activist Phil Cothran, Sr.
In the immediate aftermath of the 2017 election, the quartet of Young, Young, Taylor and Crowther established Clifford Young in the capacity of board president. They then together flexed their rejuvenated GOP muscle, initiating the firing, suspension or eventual resignations of five of the district’s highest ranking staff members – General Manager Matthew Litchfield, Assistant General Manager Greg Gage, the district’s human resources manager, Karen Logue, and the board’s secretary, Shanae Smith, and Chief Financial Officer Marie Ricci. The board had also, on a motion by Taylor seconded by Crowther, and approved in a 4-to-1 vote with Olinger in opposition, hired a general legal counsel for the district with whom Taylor was comfortable, Robert Tafoya of the law firm Tafoya & Garcia. Tafoya was also the city attorney for the City of Baldwin Park. Based on Taylor’s further recommendation, the district hired Baldwin Park Councilman Ricardo Pacheco to serve as West Valley’s assistant general manager. Taylor would later play a central role in hiring Clarence Mansell, who had extensive experience well-established credentials in dealing with municipal water issues with the Los Angeles County Sanitation District and the cities of Los Angeles, Corona and Rialto, to serve as West Valley’s general manager.
In time, chairmanship of the West Valley board of directors was handed over from Dr. Clifford Young to Dr. Michael Taylor. Either shortly before or shortly after that transition, a schism developed between doctors Young and Taylor. While that contretemps was apparent to many, though perhaps not all, within the inner circle of the West Valley Water District, it went generally unrecognized by the general public, as Republicans are constitutionally reluctant to wash their linen openly. What was perhaps the first hint of dissension came earlier this year when Dr. Young and Dr. Taylor locked horns on an item calling for the district to send a formal request to the state controller’s office to conduct a full financial audit of all of the West Valley Water District’s fiscal dealings over the previous two years, including all contracts and contractors used by legal counsel. Taylor suggested that instead of having the state auditor go over the district’s books, the district have the district’s previous auditing firm carry out the examination. When Greg Young, who had gravitated toward Dr. Young’s position with regard to most of the differences that were emerging between Drs. Young and Taylor, insisted on the board voting on the original motion to seek the state audit, that motion failed 2-to-3. Taylor then motioned to have the district’s contract auditor carry out the audit to cover the period from the end of the last audit completed to the current date. That passed 3-to-0, with Young and Young abstaining.
On February 19, 2019, Clifford Young, acting in conjunction with West Valley Water District Chief Financial Officer Naisha Davis and West Valley Water District Assistant Board Secretary Patricia Romero, planted a ticking time bomb at West Valley when they quietly, under seal, filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court, referred to as a qui tam action, which alleged a host of wrongdoing within the district.
As plaintiffs, represented by attorneys Rachel Fiset and Erin Coleman of the law firm Zweibach, Fiset & Coleman, Young, Davis and Romero alleged Tafoya, as the district’s general counsel; West Valley Water District Special Counsel Clifton Albright and his law firm, Albright, Yee & Schmit; West Valley Water District Special Counsel Martin Kaufman and his law firm; and West Valley Water District consultant Robert Katherman, as defendants, had violated the California False Claims Act. In the suit, Taylor, Assistant West Valley General Manager Ricardo Pacheco, Crowther and Mansell were identified as coconspirators.
A writ of qui tam is a private individual’s or individuals’ petition, advocating a prosecution and a court order against those the petitioner or petitioners alleges or allege have engaged in prohibited acts. The petitioner in a qui tam action can receive all or part of any penalty imposed on those adjudged guilty. The suit filed by Young, Davis and Romero names the district as a plaintiff despite the consideration that the district board never voted to file the suit and, in fact, three of the board’s members – Taylor, Crowther and Olinger – are adamantly opposed to the prosecution of the suit, disagree with the upshot of the suit, and have not empowered the law firm Zweibach, Fiset & Coleman, nor Rachel Fiset nor Erin Coleman to act on the district’s behalf. According to Coleman, however, Young’s, Davis’s and Romero’s assertions of whistleblower status taken together with the nature of the false claim allegations they are making against the defendants endow the complainants with the legal entitlement to sue on behalf of the district and its constituents.
The lawsuit alleges that Taylor, who had been chief of the Baldwin Park Police Department from 2013 to 2016, was subsequently re-hired to a one-year contract to again serve as Baldwin Park police chief on December 1, 2017, some 25 days after being elected to the water board and six days before he was sworn in. Taylor’s contract to resume his duties as police chief was drafted by Tafoya, who was also Baldwin Park’s city attorney, according to the lawsuit. Upon being sworn in as a water board member and assuming his duties in that capacity on December 7, 2018, according to the suit, Taylor effectuated the hiring Tafoya as the West Valley Water District’s general counsel on a contract with no end date. In the ensuing 18 months, according to the lawsuit, Tafoya’s firm billed the West Valley Water District approximately $395,000.
Further, according to the suit, less than four months later, after Taylor assumed his position on the West Valley Water Board dais, Pacheco, a Baldwin Park City Councilman who had voted for Taylor’s reinstatement as police chief, was hired by the West Valley Water District as the “assistant general manager of external affairs.” He was later moved without board approval to the newly created position of “assistant general manager,” earning a salary of $192,000 per year, the suit alleges. Since his hiring, Pacheco and the California Education Coalition Political Action Committee he controls have donated a total of $8,000 to Taylor’s campaign and $1,000 to West Valley Water District Board Vice President Kyle Crowther’s campaign, according to the lawsuit.
According to the suit, in 2018, Taylor spearheaded the effort to hire Mansell, whom the suit characterizes as Taylor’s associate, as the West Valley Water District’s interim general manager and subsequently as the permanent general manager, at an annual salary of $225,000. The lawsuit alleges Mansell was hired by a 3-to-2 board vote without a recruitment effort.
The lawsuit alleges that Tafoya and other entities working in a consultant or special capacity on behalf of the district, including Albright, Yee & Schmit, the Kaufman Law firm and Robert Katherman, have made contributions to Crowther’s and Taylor’s campaign war chests or otherwise assisted them in their campaigns and provided them with gratuities. According to the suit, Taylor, Tafoya, Pacheco, Crowther, Mansell, West Valley Water District Human Resources and Risk Manager Deborah Martinez and other law firms and consultants connected to Taylor and Tafoya “have engaged in illegal kickbacks and bribes to ensure contracts with the district and subsequent approval of invoices for payment.”
Since the suit was filed, Maribel S. Medina, representing the West Valley Water District as a real party in interest in the lawsuit, has refuted most of the elements in the suit. According to public records, Clifford Young voted to hire both Mansell and Pacheco.
In June, the ticking time bomb in the form of that suit exploded, when it and its contents were publicly revealed. The adverse publicity that attended the revelation of the lawsuit has triggered widespread violations of the 11th Commandment, including ruthless jockeying among Republicans for the inside track in the race to replace Josie Gonzales as Fifth District San Bernardino County Supervisor next year.
Of San Bernardino County’s five supervisorial districts, the Fifth district is the one most heavily weighted in favor of the Democratic Party. Of the Fifth District’s 181,809 voters, 89,954, or 49.5 percent, are registered as Democrats, with 33,241, or 18.3 percent, registered as Republicans. Another 47,638, or 26.2 percent are registered with no political affiliation. The remaining 6.1 percent are registered with the more obscure parties, including Peace and Freedom, American Independent, Green, and Libertarian. The number of voters in the Fifth District affiliated with the Democratic Party approaches three times as many as those who are registered Republicans. Not since 1988, when Bob Hammock prevailed, has a Republican been elected Fifth District supervisor. From 1992 onward, Jerry Eaves, who was previously a steelworkers union representative, Rialto’s mayor and a member of the California Assembly, was elected to the post and reelected twice. For less than a year, Clifford Young in 1994 temporarily broke the Democratic grip on the office when he was appointed to fill out the remainder of Eaves’ term. But from 2004 onward, Josie Gonzales, has held onto the post. She is obliged to leave that office next year because of term limits, and will be going out with a substantial amount of money in her political war chest, a good portion of which she will use to assist her choice to succeed her, Dan Flores, her chief of staff. Flores has already raised $262,000 of his own money, which he and his supporters believe at the very least boosts him to the head of the pack of Democratic competitors and will potentially ward off any other Democratic candidates altogether. Democratic pollsters are confident that given the Fifth District’s registration numbers, no Republican can win the Fifth District supervisor’s seat.
Nevertheless, the Republicans for some time have been salivating at the opportunity to sponsor a charismatic Republican candidate who can capture the imagination of a wide cross section of the electorate in the Fifth District, including making major inroads into the Democratic Party-affiliated majority, and through a more energetic, coordinated and sophisticated effort than the Democrats typically engage in, claim the Fifth District seat on the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors for the GOP.
Such a coup would require, the Republicans recognize, finding the right candidate and then hitching all of the Republican Party’s horses to the same side of the wagon, while cleverly undercutting the leading Democratic candidate with classic electioneering attack tactics. It is believed that Flores, with all of his ostensible advantages going toward the upcoming election year, yet harbors certain vulnerabilities that if exploited in a well-timed and orchestrated fashion, could change the election outcome from the easily achieved Democratic victory most political pundits and observers believe is coming, to a Republican breakthrough.
Quietly, for the last 18 months, the Republican forces had been lining up with regard to thrusting Clifford Young into the fray as the GOP standard bearer in the Fifth District, representing him as someone who carries the full range of credentials, experience, wherewithal and gravitas, to say nothing of the voter appeal, to achieve the objective. Key to Young’s success were three elements. One of those was his presumed appeal in the San Bernardino portion of the district, where his status as a college faculty member is a factor in his favor. Second is his gravitas as a community leader in Rialto, where he lives, buttressed by his membership on the West Valley Water District Board of Directors, which functions from the district headquarters on Baseline Avenue in Rialto. Every bit as important as the first two considerations is his presumed ability to tap into the base of support that would be offered by his foremost ally in Fontana, Mayor Acquanetta Warren. Remarkably, Warren has constructed a lock-tight hold on Fontana’s politics, having seized and maintained primacy as mayor for the last two-and-one half election cycles, having first been elected to the city’s top spot in 2010, and having served on the city council for eight years before that, after she was appointed to a vacant position on that panel in December 2002, and was re-elected in 2004 and 2008. While Fontana is overwhelmingly Democratic in its political orientation, with 43,528 or 48.1 percent of its 90,431 voters registered as Democrats and 16,388 or 18.1 percent affiliated with the Republican Party, Warren’s political machine has kept her coalition in power over the years. At present, that coalition consists of four Republicans – herself, Councilman John Roberts, Councilman Jesse Armendarez and Councilman Phil Cothran, Jr., who is the son of political activist Phil Cothran, Sr. As one of Clifford Young’s longtime political allies, Warren is thought to be able to intercede with Fontana’s voters and deliver a sizable percentage of votes to him in the upcoming 2020 election.
The falling out between Drs. Young and Taylor has overturned the Republicans apple cart in the Fifth District, undoing crucial alignments that the GOP had been counting upon in 2020.
Within the West Valley Water District itself, Greg Young, for the most part, has sided with Cliff Young. Crowther has hewed to Taylor’s side of the divide. This has made Olinger, the Democrat, the crucial swing vote. Olinger, who was displaced from the board in 2013 by Clifford Young, now finds himself in the fold with Taylor and Crowther, such that Taylor is now in ascendancy in the district.
Crucial Republican electioneering assets, such as the independent expenditure groups Inland Empire Taxpayers Association and the Citizens Against Wasteful Spending Political Action Committee, which previously Clifford Young might have utilized for his own electoral efforts and to assist those in league with him, are now aligned with Taylor, cutting Young off from crucial support. The upshot is that those organizations are being used against Clifford Young’s sole remaining ally on the board, Greg Young, and in support of both of Greg Young’s opponents, Jackie Cox and Angel Ramirez.
This year, the three contests in the West Valley Water District are being conducted using by-district rather than at-large balloting, as was previously the case. In the district’s Division 1 race, Crowther is opposed by former board member Linda Gonzalez, who was defeated by Taylor in 2017, and Bloomington Municipal Advisory Commission Member Betty Gosney. In Division Four, Olinger is being challenged by another Democrat, Channing Hawkins, who served as an appointee to the United States Department of Agriculture’s Office of Civil Rights, during the Obama Administration. In the Fifth District, Greg Young is faced with candidacies by Bloomington Municipal Advisory Commission Member Jackie Cox and Angel Ramirez, a Fontana resident who this summer moved to Bloomington to qualify his candidacy in Division Five.
As of earlier this month, Taylor’s campaign committee had provided Olinger’s campaign with $14,110.28. While Taylor’s support of Olinger, a Democrat, is significant, it does not appear to be a violation of the 11th commandment, per se, as Olinger is running against Hawkins, another Democrat.
While Taylor is not up for election in this year’s race and Crowther is, early this week, on October 14, Crowther made a $3,000 contribution to Taylor’s campaign fund. That provision of money can be put into perspective with the consideration that on September 13, Taylor’s campaign fund made a $7,500 contribution to the Citizens Against Wasteful Spending Political Action Committee. The Citizens Against Wasteful Spending Political Action Committee in April provided Fontana City Councilman Jesse Armendarez with $4,0222 for his campaign for San Bernardino County supervisor, the maximum amount a supervisor candidate can receive from an individual donor. All of this puts Taylor and Crowther firmly in Armendarez’s camp, which is fully consistent with their enmity toward Clifford Young.
While Armendarez is a member of Mayor Warren’s ruling coalition and her political machine, he appears to be moving in defiance of her support of Clifford Young in next year’s race for supervisor. Similarly, Warren has thus far supported Crowther in his electoral efforts in the West Valley Water District. Yet Crowther’s standing as a member of the coalition that includes Taylor and Olinger runs counter to Warren’s support of Clifford Young as well as her affiliation with Greg Young. Both Crowther and Taylor are heavily supporting Angel Ramirez in his bid for the Fifth Division West Valley Water District Board position.
In recent weeks, there have been a flurry of political hit pieces landing in the mailboxes of West Valley Water District Fifth Division voters. Three of those attack Greg Young, with two of those having been paid for by the Inland Empire Taxpayers Association. One of those references a series of headlines from local newspapers which appear to be critical of the water district. The backside of that mailer touts Ramirez and his candidacy, stating “Demand accountability. Demand ethics. Demand transparency.” The second hit piece targeting Greg Young from the Inland Empire Taxpayer’s Association contains three photos, several or all of which are possibly Photoshopped, which show someone who looks like Young holding cocktail, wine and a large margarita glasses, and refers to Young as “the ultimate bully” who missed three board meetings in August and September of this year. “End the abuse of power,” the flyer commends the reader. “Stand up to Greg Young” A third hit piece concerning Greg Young was paid for by Taylor’s election committee. Bearing the phrase “Greg Young Caught Redhanded,” it references a newspaper article which the mailer says provided a “report [of] how politician Greg Young is improperly using your money to fund his political campaign.” Young, the mailer states, engaged in “dishonest and desperate campaign tactics. This election, let’s clean up Bloomington’s water company. Reject Greg Young and his dirty politics.”
Simultaneously, a mailer went out from the Inland Empire Taxpayer’s Association touting Jackie Cox and her candidacy, calling her “Our proven leader in water,” noting that she was formerly a West Valley Water District board member, and crediting her with “working harder to get water rates lowered.” That mailer was matched by one paid for by Taylor’s campaign fund which lionized Angel Ramirez as “the best choice for West Valley Water District.” The mailer pictures and quotes Taylor, “Angel Ramirez is the right choice for Bloomington water customers. His proven commitment to our families demonstrates his leadership abilities and he will apply those principles and values in ensuring the safest water for our children, seniors and families. Angel Ramirez is the real deal and will be a tremendous asset as your advocate.”
Greg Young did not take that supinely. He fired back with a hit piece of his own. The front side of that 11 by 8.5 inch cardboard missive referred to “Your ratepayer’s champion: Greg Young.” The reverse side, while intended to combat Ramirez’s candidacy, took as much aim at Taylor as Ramirez. Characterizing Taylor as a “disgraced former chief of police,” it accused him of having “taken control of the water district,” asserting he was in cahoots with Tafoya and Pacheco. Ramrirez, the mailer charged, was Taylor’s “bought and paid for candidate.” Ramirez’s claim of being an educator was bogus, according to the mailer. “Angel Ramirez has no college degree nor any practical experience in the water industry,” the mailer states.
In what Almendarez’s forces hope will be a presaging of what is to come with endorsements the San Bernardino County Republican Central Committee will make next year with regard to the Fifth District Board of Supervisors race, Armendarez and his allies within the local Republican establishment, including Fontana Councilman Phil Cothran Jr.’s father, Phil Cothran, convinced the central committee’s executive directors to withhold the party’s endorsement from Greg Young, who is himself a member of the central committee and the chairman of the Fifth District delegation, and provide it to Ramirez.
Armendarez is now working toward having the central committee ace Clifford Young out of the party’s endorsement in the race for supervisor and instead have that accolade conferred upon him. Clifford Young’s forces are gearing up for a battle royal over that issue.
The way in which Greg Young was denied the Republican Party’s endorsement is not sitting well with a substantial number of active Republicans. They are mindful of Greg Young’s efforts in support of the party over the last decade, and are alarmed that as an incumbent he was not given the same preference normally accorded to Republican officeholders seeking reelection.
The contretemps in the West Valley Water district carries with it the potential of undercutting or perhaps even obliterating the toehold the GOP is maintaining in Fontana, as Warren’s loyalty to both Clifford Young and Greg Young is hardfast, and the maneuvering by Armendarez and Crowther is testing her resolve and ability to keep her coalition in Fontana intact.
Despite the party registration advantage and demographic forces that have been running against it for a decade now, the Republican Party in San Bernardino County has been able to maintain its edge over the Democrats through its cohesion and higher order of coordination among its disciplined forces while the less focused and highly fractious Democrats have squandered there political might in petty squabbles, including fighting amongst themselves over leadership and personal advancement. Now, with the division in the West Valley District pitting Republican against Republican, that situation has begun to reverse itself as the hidden dynamics of resentment, irritation and rivalry that were previously tamped down upon and sublimated toward the overriding interest of the party have broken out into the open among Republicans and are mushrooming to the point where events are about to overtake the GOP countywide, threatening to destroy one of the last bastion’s of Republicanism in the Golden State.
The meltdown among Republicans in Rialto is now threatening to expose GOP electioneering activity taking place within the halls of government.
Word has come that evidence has surfaced, consisting of some form of electronic media or documentation, demonstrating Assistant West Valley General Manager Jeremiah Brosowske was engaged in work on the premises of the West Valley Water District Headquarters at 855 West Baseline Road in Rialto on behalf of one of the district’s board candidates. At press time, the Sentinel was unable to confirm that the evidence, believed to be a video, was turned over to the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Public Integrity Unit. Brosowske, the former executive director of the Republican Central Committee and former Hesperia city councilman, was hired as the assistant general manager of the West Valley Water District in May. In the wake of the accusation that he was engaged in partisan electioneering activity during work hours performed at the district’s premises has provoked calls for his suspension. Prior to his employment by the district, Brosowske was a political operative for Mountain States Consulting Group, LLC. Since April, Pacheco, one of the district’s other assistant general manager, has been on paid leave.
By Mark Gutglueck