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Central Basin Nixes $350K in Proposed Contracts to Ex-Senator Polanco and Sacramento Firm

CANCELLATION A RESULT OF INFORMATION CONTAINED IN HEWS MEDIA GROUP PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST.

By Brian Hews and Brian Hews

The questioning of information contained in public records obtained by Hews Media Group-Community News have stopped the award of  two questionable contracts, valued at over $315,000, between the Central Basin Municipal Water District, former California State Senator Richard Polanco, and a Sacramento based political-lobbying firm.

In the documents, Polanco’s firm, Tre Es Consultants, as well as the Sacramento based Political Solutions, LLC, were both being recommended by CBMWD officials to be given the ‘State Legislative Advocacy Services Contract’ at a meeting of the board of directors at the Commerce based agency.

The contracts stated that Polanco’s was to be the ‘lead consultant representing both firms.’

District officials have been shopping for politically connected consultants in Sacramento during the past few months ever since they cut ties with ex-California State Assemblyman Tom Calderon who collected what is believed to be more than $1 million in taxpayer funds over the past several years.

Calderon is believed to one of the central figures in a massive criminal probe by members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in connection with a complex bid rigging scheme.

Polanco served as a member of both the California State Assembly  and California State Senate for more than two decades representing a wide swath of municipalities spread out around the Eastside.

In May 2013, CBMWD Board of Directors authorized General Manager Anthony J. Perez to negotiate and enter into one-year agreements with Political Solutions, LLC and Tres Es Consulting “for the provision of State Legislative Advocacy Services.”

Polanco and Tami Miller, a high powered political lobbyist and advisor would have both banked $158,400 if the contracts would have been approved.

District officials also had the name of  Richard Polanco as being the lead consultant to be representing both firms, but according to CBMWD spokesman Richard Legaspi, Polanco name was “incorrectly inserted as being the consultant” on both projects.  “Mr. Polanco has no affiliation with Politicial Strategies, his name on both contract proposals was in error,” Legaspi said of the oversight.

Both firms were slated to help the water agency to interface with Governor Jerry Brown, and other statewide constitutional officers, as well as other California Agencies, Commissions and Departments. and to “assist in preparing the District’s Board of Directors, General Manager and designated staff.

Calls into Political Strategies, Inc. in Sacramento were not returned.

Central Basin Municipal Water District is currently the subject of at least two massive criminal probes by the Federal Bureau of Investigation as well as the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office.

Recently, the offices of California State Senator Ronald Calderon had his office in Sacramento raided by FBI agents.

Former Assemblyman Tom Calderon, the brother of Senator Ronald Calderon, had previously been granted more than $1 million in consulting contracts with Central Basin Municipal Water District over a several year span.

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