By Robert Haugh
The state’s campaign watchdog, the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) won’t pursue “an enforcement action” based on a complaint by former Councilwoman Patty Mahan.
Last month, a couple weeks before the March primary, Mahan filed a complaint against Mayor Lisa Gillmor, City Clerk Hosam Haggag, City Manager Deanna Santana and City Attorney Brian Doyle.
Mahan said City officials used public resources to campaign in favor of the March 2020 ballot measure.
Measure C was an attempt to change the City Charter to elect councilmembers by district. It lost by a wide margin in the March election.
“It comes as no surprise to the City that the FPPC dismissed this frivolous complaint,” said Haggag in a City press release. “Providing educational information to residents is what the City has done in the past and is one of my duties as your elections official. We will continue to encourage residents to engage in civic participation and will not be dissuaded by hollow threats and baseless allegations.”
Also in the City’s press release, Gillmor said: “This is not the first time that former Councilmember Mahan used this tactic to discredit the good work of City officials and staff. She filed the same allegations two years ago with the same FPPC outcome—which was that her allegations had no merit and were fully dismissed. I want to thank the City for continuing to provide good public information and education for voters.”
The Measure C educational information that the City put out is available on the City’s website. It included mailers and flyers.
Mahan resigned in January from her City Council seat and she made it controversial. She accused City staff of publicly disclosing that she had serious medical issues. But Mahan herself had disclosed that many times at Council meetings. She also stated she was leaving for health reasons in an official email to City staff.
Mahan is a lawyer. She threatened to take legal action against the City for violating her privacy. But she has not yet initiated a lawsuit.