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EXCLUSIVE: FPPC Investigating Central Basin Water Director Leticia Vasquez for ‘Conflict of Interest and Violating Campaign Disclosure Laws’

By Brian Hews

The Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) has commented on what HMG-CN exclusively reported online last Friday, and in its print edition Jan. 23, concerning the investigation of Central Basin Water Director Leticia Vasquez.

Jay Wierenga, Communications Director for the FPPC told HMG-CN, “we have an active investigation underway regarding Leticia Vasquez (and we are) looking into potential violations of the Political Reform Act regarding conflict of interest and campaign disclosure.”

The email went on, “we can’t comment on open and ongoing investigations, so that is about all I/we can tell you at this time.”

In a threatening letter dated Jan. 21, Director Vasquez blasted HMG-CN and demanded a retraction saying, “I am not under investigation by the FPPC. The FPPC specifically informed me at this time we have not made any determination regarding an investigation.”

Part of letter sent to HMG-CN by Director Vasquez.

Part of letter sent to HMG-CN by Director Vasquez.

HMG-CN obtained the letter from the FPPC asking for documents related to her illegal Central Basin (CB) Board vote to approve waiving the attorney-client privilege in a Qui Tam “Whistleblower” lawsuit against CB.

Vasquez has repeatedly denied she is a “party plaintiff” to the whistleblower lawsuit but court documents and two attorneys contacted by HMG-CN have confirmed that she is a party plaintiff.

In addition, CB sources told HMG-CN that the FPPC and investigators are looking into whether Vasquez actually lived in her district when she ran for the seat in 2012.

The investigator requested the “Agenda Packet, Agenda and Minutes for the October 9, 2004 meeting concerning the Qui Tam case, bc518653.”

He also requested “the date of the board vote to waive attorney-client privilege regarding the Qui Tam case.”

Two other items that the investigator asked for, seemingly unrelated to the Qui Tam case but items that point to a residency investigation, were “the date Vasquez was elected to the board and the date Vasquez took office.”

Sources inside CB confirmed to HMG-CN that the FPPC asked for documentation signed by Vasquez attesting to her residency in Lynwood.

Vasquez has been a lightning rod since her election in 2012. Sources are now telling HMG-CN that during next Monday’s CB Board meeting she will lead a vote to remove Director Phil Hawkins from the CB Metropolitan Water District (MWD) Board  seat and install herself as the MWD board member.