Friday, February 17, 2012

Friday Free For All

Where in the world is Carmen Trutanich?

Ever since City Attorney Carmen Trutanich announced his campaign to become District Attorney, reporters have been trying to speak to the former ambulance chaser slip and fall lawyer turned career politician to try to verify some of the claims that he made his email campaign launch.

Apparently neither Trutanich nor his allegedly unpaid campaign consultant John Shallman are returning calls from reporters including the LA Times' Jack Leonard and the LA Weekly's Gene Maddaus. Both are seeking to see question Trutanich as to various aspects of his candidacy, questions that the 60 year-old self-admitted 'LIAR' is anxious to avoid.

Trutanich has good reason to hide from reporters; media coverage of his lies about police endorsements caused him to cancel his plans for a media event campaign launch. It is understood that certain claims made by Trutanich during an interview with KPCC's AirTalk host Larry Mantle could also be shown to be implausible if not false, hence Trutanich's duck and cover antics.

Trujillo garners endorsement of Congresswoman Linda Sanchez

District Attorney candidate Mario Trujillo's campaign received a significant boost this week with the announcement that Congresswoman Linda Sanchez had endorsed his campaign. Full report here.

Lacey endorsed by both sides

Drilling down through District Attorney candidate Jackie Lacey's website reveals an intriguing paradox; she is endorsed by both the former Public Defender Mike Judge and DA Steve Cooley.

Jackson to speak at GOP Convention

The Los Angeles Metropolitan News-Enterprise reports that District Attorney candidate Alan Jackson will speak at the California Republican Party’s upcoming convention.

A GOP spokesperson said Jackson will speak at the convention’s Feb. 25 banquet, along with former Minnesota governor and national Mitt Romney campaign co-chair Tim Pawlenty, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Preibus, and 24-year-old Placentia Mayor Jeremy Yamaguchi. The event is being held at the Hyatt San Francisco.

As the only declared Republican in the race, Jackson's speech looks certain to solidify support for his campaign.

ADDA comes under pressure to pull Trutanich recommendation

A recent comment from Marc Debbaudt is worthy of repetition:

I am a little surprised by some information I received today. After reading this blog site on a regular basis, you all convinced me that Trutanich was anti-labor and that there was little liklihood that he would get the labor endorsement. Well, I am informed that today COPE, the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor's Committee On Political Endorsements, met and heard from the candidates for DA, Mario Trujillo, Steve Ipsen, Danette Meyers, Bobby Grace and TRUTANICH. The LA County Fed is the union of unions. Not present, I am told, we're Jackie Lacey and Alan Jackson' though I am not certain of that. I am told that every candidate was given ten minutes, except Trutanich, who was given a half an hour. Why Trutanich was given more time was not explained to the candidates who, at least one, felt short changed. For what it is worth, I am told that Trutanich has the endorsement of some unions and was invited by them to speak, so you can blame ADDA all you want, but his presence there was inevitable. Also Trujillo, who did not received an invitation to speak from the ADDA, was there, too, because of his other labor endorsements. In any event, I am told that after this meeting COPE has decided to recommend to the LA County Fed to endorse Trutanich. So, final approval or ultimate endorsement has not been cast in stone yet. However, today Trutanich moved closer to that reality.

The LA County Fed meets on 2/27/12 at which time it will affirm or reject COPE's, their committee's, recommendation. Given what most anonymous posters on this website appear to feel about Trutanich, I thought it was important to share this information because it is not too late to affect the LA County Fed's decision. There is 11 days to take some action if you so desire.

One opinion communicated to me is that the ADDA Board's failure to endorse, or to choose to wait to endorse, after conducting interviews, was a mistake. Why hold interviews and then NOT endorse? I agree with this opinion. We are a union. We should endorse someone.

Two things are still possible. One involves the ADDA and the other involves AFSCME.

DDAs who feel there should be an endorsement must inform the ADDA President that the Board should/must endorse and must do so immediately, that is, before 2/27/12 in order to attempt to influence the LA County Fed's decision. The ADDA Board is meeting at AFSCME (Union and Shatto) on Tuesday 2/21/12. This item can be agendized if you demand it.

The opposite is also possible. If the will of the DDAs is to NOT endorse Trutanich, then a negative repudiation of Trutanich by the ADDA may be a corollary way to affect the LA County Fed's decision. I don't understand why we are a union yet don't act like one and are afraid to endorse or condemn.

As to AFSCME, AFSCME has yet to endorse in the DA's race. I believe they are waiting on the ADDA, since the ADDA is the affiliate of AFSCME most affected by the DA race. So, a powerful union voice has not yet attempted to influence COPE or the LA County Federation of Labor. I could be wrong on that, because I have no direct insight into what AFSCME is doing, but I believe it is true that AFSCME is awaiting the ADDA and has taken no action yet.

If the anti-Trutanich sentiment is real then you all need to try to influence the ADDA Board immediately to take action against Trutanich, or to support one of our own DDA candidates, as well as insist that the ADDA do what is possible to influence AFSCME.

February 16, 2012 5:43 PM

Who knows who might turn up at the ADDA's monthly meeting at AFSCME's Shatto Street headquarters on Tuesday night to urge the ADDA to pull their recommendation of Trutanich?



Anonymous said...

YOU know EXACTLY why the ADDA vote was postponed: because Carmen Trutanich promised Hyatt Seligman his Grade 5 promotion if he is elected D.A. Why don't people come out and expose this? In fact he has promised many people in the DA's office their Grade 5.

Carmen is no union person, he has been a Republican all his life and recently switched for political gain only. He has furloughed his own Deputy City Attorneys 32 days out of the year with no pay: how can he deserve any union support?

Anonymous said...

The ADDA is disenfranchinsing itself by being wishy washy. In our efforts to not hurt anyone's feelings, we're turning ourselves into a joke. Whether we like it or not, Bobby, Danette, and Steve have no chance.
Trutanich is the only candidate of the bunch who actually has a chance to win. He has already lined up a dozen major unions who, no matter what happens, are planning to put together a million dollar independent expenditure campaign for him.

They're also planing a major field operation. I don't think any of the other candidates will have anywhere near the resources and name id he has.

We need to stop all the petty bickering back and forth over issues that are ultimately inconsequintial to our future,
and try to establish a relationship with the next D.A., before it's too late.

Quite frankly, if we put ourselves on the sidelines or back the wrong horse, we're just shooting ourselves in the foot again.

Anonymous said...

8:31 - then make friends with the horse that tirds on you, kiss the ring for the next 16 years, keep your mouth shut and let the injustices continue. That will be a fun life. Or I guess you can just get out of the office and be a defense attorney while your client gets screwed by the corrupt DA's office. My advice to you would be to stay out of the Hispanic and African American communities. Defense attorney's don't get much justice for thier clients under the current reign of terror. Cheers!

Anonymous said...

Trutanich has promised us nothing... The ADDA and AFSCME better get it together and grow a pair. At least fight for the people who actually care about DAs which obviously isn't Hyatt who cares only about his promotion under Trutanich. What am I paying $1000 a year for, if the ADDA board is a bunch of cowards. We should decertify.

Anonymous said...

A plebiscite could have been held and should have been held. The ADDA board didn't hold one because they knew the outcome wasn't going to be what they wanted. What we are dealing with now is simply the consequences of that decision.

Anonymous said...

8:31am makes an excellent point. I can't stomach the thought of Trutanich as DA. It really upsets me that he's my CA. However, all the damage has already been done. Quit trying to put the toothpaste back in the tube. If the County Federation of Labor endorses Trutanich, and the ADDA Board tries to endorse anyone else, it will be shrugged off with a dismissive snicker. People will shake their heads and say "well if they didn't WANT Trutanich as DA, why did the put him on their approved list???"

Marc Debbaudt said...

I don't know exactly why the ADDA vote to endorse was postponed. I''m the one who called for the vote to endorse and it was voted down. I can't account for why the Board voted against endorsing or what each Director thinks except what was said: The filing deadline in March meant that others might enter the race. I disagreed with waiting, but the vote was the vote. Were there secret reaons? I don't know. Again I think we should endorse someone.

I sent an email the next day to the Board encouraging a plebiscite. That would have given us about three weeks to do a plebiscite before 2/27/12, when the County Fed votes to endorse. The Board did not want to rush it and seemed to indicate they wanted to do it right. I argued we should just do it. I lost. I think we should have a plebiscite. But I'm just one volunteer. I'm one person. The Board doesn't seem motivated to do a plebiscite at this time at least not until after March. I disagree. But, hey, what do I know?

I don't know if Trutanich promised Seligman anything or not.

The ADDA is being wishy washy. But then if they decide one way they are attacked and if they decide the other way they are attacked and now if they decide nothing they are attacked. So I'm with you. Not to decide is to decide. So let's just decide since we will be attacked anyway.

Is 8:31 suggesting we back Trutanich simply because 8:31 thinks he is going to win? That's the basis? Not that he would be the best DA or not that he would be best for the DDAs, but that we should just back the winner? I guess that's one way to go. However, it just doesn't seem principled to me as a representative of those who seek justice for a living.

I don't think the ADDA Board is a bunch of cowards, but I do think they are paralyzed by bad thinking. Clearly, making decisions takes time and education and things creep up fast and the ADDA is not prepared to deal with issues in a timely way, so things like plebiscites take planning and efforts by volunteers who aren't full time paid workers. AFSCME just hired a guy named Tris Carpenter to be our full time representative, so maybe we will soon start to get on top of things. We will see.

Over time, like by the next election, the ADDA may be better prepared, but meanwhile the ADDA is a bunch of volunteers inventing things as they go. So, Instead of calling the ADDA a bunch of cowards, I repeat, come and help and motivate.

I don't believe the reason we have yet to do a plebiscite is because we know what the outcome would be. I don't know what the outcome would be. What would be the outcome? I think we just couldn't get the work done quick enough. Perhaps some had some complex secret agenda for not wanting a pebiscite, but having spent time with the Board, I think that gives them far too much sophistication.

I believe if there is a runoff, we will have a by plebiscite then. We will see.

Again, as of this date, Trutanich is not on any ADDA "approved" list I know about, and nothing that a plebiscite and ADDA vote endorsing someone else couln't undo. He won COPE's recommendation, I just learned, by one vote. So he can be stopped. But no matter how frequently I say it, some of you will continue to believe for whatever reason that the opportunity to speak to COPE means much more than the ADDA Board thought it meant when they agreed to do that and also agreed not to endorse anyone.

Anonymous said...

Marc, I appreciate your comments and insight to the workings of the ADDA Board. The problem now is that the ADDA have empowered Trutanich. He is using whatever the ADDA did or did not do, as a de facto endorsement. He's telling stories at his fundraisers that the his buddies at the ADDA are looking forward to having a true crimefighter as their leader. He is saying that he knows the folks on the ADDA personally and they all remember him from his time at the office; he's a DA's DA etc. etc. Are you seriously telling me that if an ADDA member turns up on Tuesday night to speak to the Board, that he or she will even be given an opportunity to speak? Or will some bureaucratic rule be raised to silence opposition. I have heard that mere members are not permitted to speak at meetings. Can you tell us what to do?

Anonymous said...

Marc - we should;ve backed Steve Ipsen. He has the strongest labor credentials. He sued Jackie and Steve and Mario for their attempts at Union busting.

We should all get behind Steve.

Anonymous said...

Marc is angry that we affiliated with afscme. He is a lot like Chalabi. He voted to delay or possibly stop the grade 4 promotions. He said only ass kissers would suffer. He instigated the Burke debacle that cost us over 200k. He posts on this obsessively anti Trutanich blog to ensure we fight another 10 year war with the next DA.. It worked out well for him. He took the money for himself and left everyone else hanging in the federal suit. Hundreds of thousands of dollars. He writes these rambling verbose diatribes and cannot speak without screaming. Where is the honor and justice he is always screaming about. m.

Marc Debbaudt said...

Others have showed up at ADDA meetings and have been heard, so I uhave to assume that if anyone shows and raises their hand, they will I've afforded and opportunity to speak. I know of no one at a meeting who has been denied an opportunity to speak. Ni certainly will insist anyone who show be given a a moment to speak.

I urged that we not affiliate with AFSCME, but to say I am now angry at AFSCME or that we affiliated is not true. Mi accepted the verdict of the DDAs and I have moved on to the next battle. We can revisit AFSCME's involvement in 2 more years. One thing I will remember at that time is their inability to guide us thru the endorsement process in a timely and effective way. I won't forget that.

Sorry, I don't know who Chalabi is.

You are so wrong about what my vote on the PERSA litigation was. I voted to back our attorney who wants to prevail on the PERSA litigation. Our Attorney understood the political fallout that would result from delaying or stopping promotions, and he went into court and explained that to the judge and specifically informed the court that we did NOT want that. I know, because I spoke to our attorney myself about going just that. He understood that we would rather lose, which then win, if that was a consequence. But 11:18 bought into the rumors being spread by the administration and the ADDA haters and the fear mongers, and wants to interpret everything in the worst possible light.

I supported the Burke lawsuit, but did I instigate it. In fact, I could be wrong, but I think the vote on the Burke lawsuit was unanimous, or at least a super majority.

No, I don't want another ten year war, but I don't want to surrender either after a ten year fight in which we have won virtually very battle. 11:18 is so afraid that even though we have won major battles, he.she would just surrender. I don't get that. I am more than happy to come to reasonable Terms on behalf of all DDAs like a promotional policy and a transfer policy.

I took the money just for myself? What does that mean? The county settled with THE ADDA UNION, paying the UNION's attorney fees and agreeing to a permanent injunction against Cooley messing with the Union and it's members, and the county settled with me simultaneously. So, it wasn't just me who took the money, it was me and the ADDA union. So, your point is?

The two presidents have not settled with the county. Are you suggesting that the ADDA UNIon and I have betrayed the two presidents? So teh ADDA union and I left evryone hanging. That's just stupid.

Obviously 11:18 has a lot of anger that twists his/her judgment. Sorry you all think I'm rambling and screaming. I am attempting to supply information where this blog site is full of speculation without substance, and I am attempting to explain when I can, which is what this particular blog response attempted to do.

Anonymous said...

It is APPALLING that Trutanich thinks he has secured the ADDA's endorsement by making a secret deal to give Hyatt his grade 5 promotion. Although the ADDA has not officially endorsed yet, it is quite obvious that is the reason for the delay. Hyatt, wake up already - Trutanich cannot be trusted and has a long history of screwing over the people who have helped him - just ask Steve Cooley. Chances are that Trutanich will screw you over as well and you will NOT get your grade 5; neither will all the other dopes in the DA's Office that are supporting him because he promised them promotions.
It makes me sick to think that Trutanich is spouting off at fundraisers about how he has the support of the rank-and-file DAs, when he knows that is a complete lie and he has simply made a quid pro quo for this endorsement. Seriously, is there any lie Trutanich is not willing to tell?
Trutanich will destroy the DA's Office, it will be even worse than what he's done to the City Attorney's Office.

Anonymous said...

First, it's pathetic that we need to get news about the ADDA from LA Dragnet and not from the ADDA website. ADDA President Seligman's FAILURE to lead. Second it is pathetic that the we are not notified of ADDA agenda items so members can attend relevant meetings. ADDA President Seligman's FAILURE to lead. Now I hear that Seligman has had secret meetings with Trutanich in hopes of delivering an ADDA endorsement in exchange for his Grade 5 -- FAILURE to lead.

The current ADDA Board of Directors is NOT AN ELECTED BOARD, but rather a default board. It was put in place before agency shop passed. Now that it has passed, and all DDAs are paying an agency fee, they should do a membership drive and election so those forced to pay can have an elected board and not one by default because not enough people were interested before agency shop.

Hyatt claimed we neede to revise our bylaws --- again. That was six months ago and still nothing. FAILURE TO LEAD. We need an ADDA we are proud of and has the respect of other unions.

Since Hyatt has taken over the ADDA, he has never had a DA of the Year dinner, that were previosly held annually. This is because he has put his own personal federal lawsuit ahead of DDAs. FAILURE TO LEAD.

RECALL THE BOARD!!!!! The current ADDA bylaws has a provision that permits members to recall the Board. Someone please start circulating petitions. These clowns are supposed to negotiate for us in September! Oh please. They can't even run a board meeting, how are they going to represent us in bargaining.

HELP!!!!! Someone please circulate petitions to get MEMBERS to sign and recall the Board. Remember, only those who are members can vote, not just those paying an agency fee. If you did not fill out a membership card you are not an actual voting member.

Marc Debbaudt said...

The only thing I can address from a factual basis concerning what 10:48 said is that the current ADDA Board and Officers are not a default Board, but an elected Board. The terms of officer are for three years and Few people opposed the incumbants.

That said, given the change in status to an Agency Shop and affiliation with AFSCME, I support an election of Officers and Directors and I have called for one for months, and it is always placed on the back burner. One possible reason is to finish the by-laws first, but that, as noted, seems to be taking a long time too.further, it is not Huatt who wants a change in the by-laws. Affiliation with AFSCME requires our by-laws conform to their rules. However, please remember, those working the bylaws committee are volunteers doing work for no pay ostensibly only to help their fellow deputies out.

It should be noted that only full dues paying members can vote in an election, and they have to be members for at least a month, I believe. To me the best reason to do an election is to encourage all those who are just fair-share or agency members, that is members paying the minimum fee, to become full dues paying members by providing them an opportunity to start to participate in the bargaining unit by voting on who they want to run it. So, we should announce an election for at least two months away, and use it as a recruitng tool to encourage full membership.

What I will find ironic is that when elections are finally called, just like the last time, very few people will step up to run. Out of approximately 17 positions, last time I think only 3 were challenged. I won by virtue of the fact that no one wanted to run for vice president. So, perhaps that is what 10:48 meant by default. I was uncontested or unchallenged. Please, someone challenge me this time. In fact, I probably won't submit my name. So, to the extent Hyatt and the Board want to get rid of me quickly, all they have to do is call for elections sooner rather than later.

I agree that the agenda should go out with notice of the Board meetings so that members will come if they find an item interesting or importent. I noticed that notice of the meeting, for the first time in a long time, went out; but I think it should go out sooner, and frequently to encourage attendance.

Finally, please recall me. I've had enough. I've been doing this since 2004 I think, or maybe 2006. So 6 to 8 years. I would be more than happy to be replaced.

Finally, last nite we began to form the CNT or contract negotiating Tteam/committee. If you are interested in being on the CNT, please let Hyatt, your president, know. I was asked and refused.

10:48 said we start negotiating in September. That is not true. We start or can start in May so we have a contract before the one we currently has expires in September. Some unions, I believe we were told SEIU, for instance, may have already agreed to extend their contract given the County's purported financial condition. I'm sorry, but my memory of those details is a little weak and I didn't take notes. In any event, our CNT has been directed to determine whether or not we should enter into negotiations or not, why and why not, or extend the contract, and then advise us. They are authorized to consult with experts. If we enter into negotiations, they have been asked to prioritize and formulate our issues, and perhaps we enter into negotiations over working conditions and non-economic benefits. All this remains to be determined and is what CNTs do, as you might deduce. Whatever they elect to do wil be secret, but the above information doesnt require a rocket scientist to figure out as it is fairly obvious.

Join this committee or another committee and help improve your own lot and the lot of your fellow DDAs.