Monday, October 4, 2010

Fuentes, Williams, & LFC: new documents

     We’ve been following up a story (or stories) about LFC, a firm that has donated money to John Williams’ reelection campaign (OC Public Administrator/Guardian) and that seems to have strong ties with Tom Fuentes—as was reported recently in the Voice of OC. (Williams and Fuentes both serve on the SOCCCD board of trustees.)
     As VOC noted, the LFC website actually sports a testimonial from Williams:


     This is an odd juxtaposition of facts. LFC gives Williams campaign money and Williams provides LFC with a testimonial. Plus, recently, the County has used LFC’s pricey services (according to Williams’ testimonial).
     Equally curious are Tom Fuentes’ remarks. In the VOC article, Fuentes seems to downplay his relationship with LFC. He does acknowledge that he may have been the one who introduced LFC’s owner, William Lange, and Williams.
     But, Fuentes said, "there's no business relationship" with [LFC] currently, which is why his state statement of economic interests (Form 700) filed with the South Orange County Community College District doesn't indicate any income from the company.
     Fuentes said he had his offices at LFC several years ago when he became a senior fellow with Claremont Institute because the firm donated office space to the program. He still regularly communicates with an email address with an lfc.com tag.
     Yet Fuentes said he had no knowledge of the LFC land transaction for Williams' office. However, he has always been a strong supporter of Williams, and sources say he has lobbied county supervisors on Williams' behalf.
     Fuentes' introduction of Williams to LFC was around the time that Williams convinced county supervisors to combine the appointed job of Public Administrator (with an annual salary of $20,000) and the elected job of Public Guardian (which pays $138,000) and hand both offices to him.
     If Fuentes is not now working for (or working at) LFC, why does he have an LFC email address?
     In the article, Fuentes seems to imply that he never worked for LFC, but, as of four years ago when DtB explored Fuentes’ relationship with LFC, Fuentes’ SOCCCD bio stated that he was a "Senior Vice President of the LFC Group of Companies.” That title crops up in other documents as well.
     We’ve been examining recently acquired documents regarding Fuentes and his income. They raise interesting questions about Fuentes’ relationship with LFC (and Claremont) and the nature of Fuentes’ income. More later.

Evidently, the Claremont Institute is one of Fuentes' sources of income.

6 comments:

  1. You guys have been busy. I thought the weekend was for relaxing!

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  2. It could be that Tom "forgot" his VP status - he is a busy guy after all, so much consulting and advising to do. I am sure it just slipped his mind. Give the guy a break.

    What are you implying anyway? Some kind of hanky panky? Quid pro quo? Mutual back scratching?

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  3. Isn't this just how business is done here in the OC? Some kind of strange municipal daisy chain?

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  4. 9:40, it helps to look at the larger picture. Fuentes arrives on the SOCCCD board (2000), and then Williams gets a dinky county job sans qualifications; then suddenly it becomes a big county job; Williams gets in trouble, and he hires the guy who defends fraudster and OC Treasurer Chriss Street, and who happens to be the lawyer for most or all of the Supes, who, inexplicably, give Williams a pass after two harsh Grand Jury reports indicating gross incompetence and irregularity at the PAPG. Despite the obvious conflict of interest, Padberg goes to work for Williams, who ultimately fires her and hires the DA's girlfriend. Spitzer pokes into Williams' curious affairs and is suddenly, seemingly inexplicably, fired. Meanwhile, Fuentes works for (or once worked for) LFC, though Fuentes seems to deny that. On and on it goes. These people are amazing. --BvT

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  5. Fuentes wouldn't lie because, as he reminds us constantly, he's a man of God. Unless God told him to lie,which would make his lying acceptable, at least to him.

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  6. Oh, goodie, you have the Form 700s. Such fine rainy day reading. This should be fun.

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