Record Spending by La Habra Heights Candidate Viewed as Fiscally Irresponsible
There are 13 comments on the www.whittierdailynews.com story from Feb 28, 2013, titled Record Spending by La Habra Heights Candidate Viewed as Fiscally Irresponsible. In it, www.whittierdailynews.com reports that:La Habra Heights, CA, Chester Jeng, a La Habra Heights City Council challenger, may have set a record in campaign spending. Jeng so far has spent $18,788 - more than three times any of his competitors - and raised $19,181, according to campaign finance records filed with the city clerk's office. Before this year, former Councilman Howard Vipperman owned the record, having spent $13,180 in 2007 and Katie Martin spent $10,867 as of early February 2005. Jeng was his own number one contributor, giving $15,000 to his campaign. Jeng said he was surprised that he was so far ahead of his opponents in fund raising. "I didn't think it was that much money," he said. So far, Jeng has mailed 10 fliers to voters, although he mailed four twice. "If you look at other cities, (the number) is actually on the low end," he said. However, former Councilwoman Jean Good Lietzau said she thinks the amount is high by La Habra Heights standards. "He has loaded the mailbox with fliers," Lietzau said. "For him to spend that amount of money is absolutely amazing." Challenger George Edwards accused Jeng of trying to buy the election. "That's irresponsible," Edwards said. "He doesn't have the qualifications so he's trying to buy it." Edwards also said that contributions to Jeng came from outside of La Habra Heights. Jeng called accusations that he's buying the election "ridiculous." None of the other candidates have raised or spent more than $6,000, according to their campaign financial reports. Michael Higgins has raised $5,662 and spent $3,216 while Kyle Miller has brought in $4,156 and has racked up $4,080 in charges. Edwards has accumulated $4,315 in funds and spent $3,010 while incumbent Brian Bergman has collected $3,095 and has $1,123 in expenditures.View campaign financial reports at: www.LaHabraHeights.net
Join the discussion below, or Read more at www.whittierdailynews.com.
#1 Feb 28, 2013
With current council members talking about disincorporation, the Improvement Association has put up three candidates to move the process along.
Big spender Jeng, who will make sure any City reserves are quickly spent, while on patrol looking for graffiti.
Back room Mike, who promises all decisions will be made in the back room and the residents will be told on a "need to know" basis - i.e. when the keys are about to be taken away.
Bankrupt Kyle who will take the city through the "reorganization" of disincorporation.
Disincorporation will put the developers in control and the city will be "For Sale".
#2 Feb 28, 2013
If disincorporation is not an option, why is incumbent Brian Bergman the least spending candidate? The massive per-vote spending is like paying for a ticket on the Titanic. It would seem like keeping up with other like-minded candidates in donations from supporters would be necessary to ensure a victory.
But his numbers don't add up. A Candidate's Statement costs about 1000-1500 dollars. The yard signs he has blanketing the major tnoroughfares of this small city are at least 2 dollars a copy. To say only $1,123 has been spent by the councilman suggests payment in kind is going on. The yard signs cannot be paid for by the tooth fairy and considered a gift to the candidate without being declared. I hope there is a "real" accounting of campaign expenditures planned. The Whittier Daily News is not exactly Woodward and Bernstein.
#3 Mar 2, 2013
I can understand a new resident not realizing that spending $20,000 on a LHH city council campaign is so contrary to our community standards that both Jean Good Lietzau and George Edwards (who agree on practically nothing else) find it grossly excessive. What I cannot understand is why such a person would run for city council before he becomes more familiar with the community and its traditions.
His excuse (that is how things are done in other cities) is amazing for a person who has spent most of that $20,000 on flyers proclaiming that he will fight hard to prevent LHH from becoming like other cities.
If he is successful, big money campaigns may become the “new normal” in our city. It will become financially impossible for most residents to run for office, unless they are rich or can raise a lot of money from contributors who live outside the city. The traditional “grass roots campaign”--$3000-$5000, three mailers, a few signs, and a lot of personal door to door campaigning will become a thing of the past.
And so goes another one of our rural, small town traditions.
#4 Mar 2, 2013
It seems a resident who Edwards has picked on in the past hired a PI who reported he owned a business prior to working for the current company and it went bankrupt. So stuff happens, doesn't it? City For Sale or rather, Edwards, Blagden or Lough one of which wrote this trash, your name calling and story making is so yesterday. The voters are smarter now about who you are and that nothing you put out is the truth. The polls will tell that on Tuesday. These guys haven't said anything about wanting to disincorporate. That is just another lie you put out to take the attention off of your lack of knowledge and understanding of the real issues of the town. And who cares how much someone spends on their campaign. You will find the people who live there don't. They are going to care about important things.
#5 Mar 2, 2013
All that needs to be said
#6 Mar 3, 2013
Sandy well said!
#7 Mar 3, 2013
[QUOTE who="Sandy" And who cares how much someone spends on their campaign. You will find the people who live there don't. They are going to care about important things.[/QUOTE]
Jean Good Lietzau apparently cares. Otherwise, she wouldn’t have made her comment. She is hardly a supporter of George Edwards.
The Whittier Daily News cares. Otherwise, they would not have written the article.
The State of California cares. Otherwise, the state would not have required candidates to disclose this information.
I think you will find that the people of LHH care. The question is whether they will find out how much he spent before they vote. Many people already cast absentee ballots before the WDN article was published.
I live in LHH. I care. I care because Candidate Jeng’s defense of his grossly excessive spending shows that he is not familiar with our community or its traditions. I care because I don’t want good people to be discouraged from running for council because they are not rich enough to self-fund and don’t have a lot of rich friends. I care because as campaigns become more expensive, candidates will be tempted to seek support from people who live outside our community and don‘t understand or care about our small town. rural values.
The entire point of incorporating as a city was to prevent us from becoming like Walnut, San Marino, or San Juan Capistrano (or like La Habra, for that matter). Yet, of the 10 endorsements listed by one of Candidate Jeng’s mailers, 8 are from politicians who have never lived in LHH. Do you really think that the mayors and council members of Walnut, San Marino, and San Juan Capistrano who endorsed him know or care about our rural community values? Why did Candidate Jeng encourage them to meddle in our election?
#8 Mar 4, 2013
Fact that Jean Good Lietzau is criticizing Jeng is enough for me to vote for him. That tells me Jeng is not a Lietzau puppet. I want to see new blood in our Council and not puppets that is maniupulated by Lietzaur and her cronies. I didn't see her making statements about Miller's bankruptcy and mailbox tempering. Why is that? Is it because Miller is her puppet? Move on lady, times have changed. New residents don't even know who you are.
#9 Mar 4, 2013
Absentee ballots have been turned in by former? residents Howard and Karen Vipperman and their/her daughter.
Can someone vote in the city if they don't live here anymore?
They widely announced and it was reported that they left the city and moved to Brea.
Who else voted who doesn't live in the city or passed away?
Who is checking for voter fraud?
Here are some of the Vipperman news stories:
From Whittier Daily News (with link below)
"Vipperman, 64, who has been on the City Council since March 2007, said he and his wife, Karen can't live in their house following the suicide of his stepson, Jeremy Schiro, 33, on Aug. 6.
"We decided to purchase a house in Brea that we'll move into and try and get some peace," Vipperman said."
From Heights Life (with link):
" Please join me in wishing. Howard and Karen Vipperman well in their move to. Brea."
From Orange County Register (with link):
"La Habra Heights City Councilman Howard Vipperman announced last week he is resigning from the council and moving to Brea."
From State Senator Bob Huff:
"At a recent La Habra Heights city council meeting, I presented Councilman Howard Vipperman with a Senate Resolution for his service to La Habra Heights. Councilman Vipperman announced his retirement from the City Council because he will be moving out of the city. Karen Vipperman was also recognized for her service to La Habra Heights, where she has served as a city commissioner. Howard and Karen have left their mark in the Heights, and I have no doubt they will be a great addition to their new community."
#10 Mar 4, 2013
Sandy is very upset. Sandy knows Edwards will win the election tomorrow. Sandy is the Miller, Vipperman, Carroll, Bergman, Westerhoff sad sack gang. The other 2 are not worth mentioning.
#11 Mar 5, 2013
Do yourself a favor and slap your self a couple times until you rejoin us in reality.
#12 Mar 5, 2013
The Park is the polling place for all.
Polls close at 8 p.m.
All the spending in the world on flyers matters not if you don't vote.
#13 Mar 7, 2013
So ex-residents can cast ballots, and the electorate has chosen a man who cannot control his own wallet. What a town. Bell, Cudahy, and Vernon rolled into one, with horses.
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