Skip to comments.CA: Committee may abandon Shelley probe
Posted on 02/08/2005 9:14:52 AM PST by NormsRevenge
Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez's office Monday left in doubt whether a legislative panel will resume hearings on Secretary of State Kevin Shelley's use of millions of dollars in federal voting funds now that he has resigned.
On Friday, after the embattled Democrat quit effective March 1, Núñez indicated that the Joint Legislative Audit Committee would proceed with hearings once Assembly and Senate leaders agreed on parameters.
But on Monday, the speaker's office said it was uncertain whether the panel - which met only once - will convene again.
"The speaker is in the process of consulting with the independent counsel to determine what the most appropriate course of action should be in terms of whether the joint panel hearings should proceed and in what manner," Nick Velasquez, a spokesman for Núñez, said in a prepared statement. Shelley was scheduled to testify under oath last week before the committee, which is investigating his handling of $180.5 million in federal Help America Vote Act funds.
But legislative leaders postponed the hearing until Feb. 22 to give attorneys more time to prepare.
Shelley's office, meanwhile, released copies of his official schedules Monday under a Public Records Act request filed by The Bee and other newspapers nearly three months ago.
The schedules, which cover the time Shelley took office in January 2003 until last Nov. 15, show Shelley held numerous HAVA meetings in his office as the program was being set up in 2003.
(Excerpt) Read more at sacbee.com ...
Shelley's resignation shouldn't end probe
Kevin Shelley's resignation as secretary of state last week ended an agonizing couple of months for him. But it must not pre-empt those charged with investigating him, nor give him a pass for improprieties he may have committed.
A full accounting is due.
A grand jury is investigating whether some of the money from a grant Shelley obtained for a San Francisco community center that was never built was kicked back as a campaign contribution.
Federal election officials are auditing millions of voter-education dollars that Shelley's office spent. Some went to no-bid contracts for operatives and cronies who attended partisan events. The state may have to repay the feds some of that money.
The Joint Legislative Audit Committee is also looking into how Shelley spent $46 million in Help America Vote Act funds.
Before he resigned, the committee ordered Shelley to testify at a hearing later this month. Now that he is heading out the door, some Democrats appear to be wavering about forcing him to appear.
Letting him off the hook would look like a coverup. The truth should take precedence over what may be embarrassing for Shelley and for the Democrats.
Shelley has denied he intentionally did anything wrong, though he has acknowledged sloppy management. To find the facts, put him and his underlings under oath.
Shelley's troubles might not have been discovered, had newspapers, including the Mercury News, not uncovered them. The Legislature must put checks in place to prevent future secretaries of state from abusing their office.
link to Merc Op/ED
I don't think Dave Cox will let up so easily. He got the ball rolling on this and I believe he will keep pushing.
It's just the usual - Shelley falls on the sword and the rest of it gets swept under the carpet - so more of "them" will not be held accountable. So what else is new!
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