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Commerce Councilman Ivan Altamirano Violated FPPC Conflict Of Interest Laws

 

Councilman Ivan Altam

Commerce Councilman Ivan Altam

 

By Brian Hews

A Hews Media Group-Community News investigation has found that Commerce City Councilman Ivan Altamirano has violated Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) and conflict of interest laws by participating in several Washington Blvd. Construction Project votes while owning property within 500 feet of the boulevard itself.

The Washington Blvd. project, one of the flagship renovation projects in the City, has recently come under a microscope by officials looking at the contract bidding process, payments to vendors, and the mysterious resignation of City employee Wendell Johnson who, as first reported by this newspaper, worked for the city for four months yet received a severance of $35,000.

The severance was approved by Mayor Lilia Leon, Mayor pro tem Tina Baca Del Rio, and Councilmen Ivan Altamirano and Joe Aguilar, with the support of City Attorney Eddie Olivo by hastily adopting a new City Ordinance that approved the large severance payment to Johnson.

Altamirano’s properties are located at 2566 Kurt, 5532 and 5534 Jillson in the City of Commerce.

HMG-CN has confirmed that all three properties are within 500 feet of Washington Blvd, with some as close as 200 feet.

Under FFPC laws, an official who owns real property within 500 feet of a property that is the subject of a “government decision” – for example approving the Washington Blvd. project –  is presumed to have a conflict of interest and may not vote in the decision unless the official obtained a favorable FPPC advice letter stating the official does not have a conflict of interest.

If Altamirano wanted to vote on the project, and knowing his property was within 500 feet of the project, he should have obtained a FPPC advice letter stating he did not have a conflict of interest or recuse (excuse) himself from the vote.

Altamirano did not obtain the FPPC letter and did not recuse himself actually voting on the project several times, placing him in violation of FPPC 18704, which carries substantial monetary penalties.

“It’s just politics as usual in Commerce,” said one resident. “I have seen (Commerce Councilman Hugo) Argumedo follow the rules and recuse himself from voting. Leon, Baca Del Rio and Altamirano do not care about this city or any penalties because they have their Sugar Daddy (Citadel Outlet Mall owner) Steve Craig to hold fundraisers and bail them out. Craig bailed out Baca Del Rio a few years ago with a $26,000 fundraiser and he will probably do it again for Altamirano.”

FPPC spokesperson Jay Wierenga told HMG-CN, “any violation of the Political Reform Act can lead to a fine of up to $5,000. Penalties are generally based on a number of criteria, such as any previous violations by the respondent, complexity and type of case, cooperation of those involved, similar cases and the penalties imposed on those similar cases.”

Emails into Councilman Altamirano went unreturned.

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8 Responses to Commerce Councilman Ivan Altamirano Violated FPPC Conflict Of Interest Laws

  1. Dan the man Reply

    August 21, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    Are you a legit news site/newspaper?

    • Brian L. Hews Reply

      August 21, 2015 at 5:59 pm

      Six LA Press Club Awards in the past three years, including two out of three years Best Investigative Newspaper in Los Angeles, you be the judge.

  2. Ivan Altamirano Reply

    August 21, 2015 at 4:38 pm

    The person who hides behind “Commerce Crazies”,

    It’s easy to talk the way you talk behind your little gang name.
    If youd ever like to say what you type behind your computer to my face, you know where commerce city hall is.
    Otherwise keep yelling from the bleachers.
    PEACE!

  3. Commerce Crazies Reply

    August 21, 2015 at 4:20 pm

    Brian, are Ivan’s posts real? Is he really that stupid to say Thank You? I’ve seen morons before like Central Basin’s Jim Roybal and Leticia Vasquez, but this guy tops even those fools. He’s related to Jason Stinnett right?

  4. Ivan Altamirano Reply

    August 21, 2015 at 3:45 pm

    Skimming through the internet and run into Hews with the fake News.
    Let’s see if you have the courage to post that one.
    99.99% of the time you filter my replies and only choose what works for you to hide the real truth that will expose the corruption you cause and the poison you feed my community.
    This Time after my many replies, will you have the courage to post my reply?
    Just checking.

  5. FLFF Reply

    August 21, 2015 at 3:01 pm

    If he is a liberal demo-creep it is a foregone conclusion that he will walk and never be prosecuted. This is how Ka Ka land LA county politics work!

  6. Ivan Altamirano Reply

    August 21, 2015 at 2:21 pm

    Next time get the right address

    • Brian L. Hews Reply

      August 21, 2015 at 2:43 pm

      The writer of the comment is Councilman Altamirano.

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