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Supervisor Horsley, Please Reconsider Your Decision

Supervisor Don Horsley breaks election promise.

Dear Supervisor Horsely:

When you ran for supervisor in 2010, you promised your constituents that if they voted for you, you would not take a supervisor's salary, since you already were collecting a sizable pension from San Mateo County.

Now you have reversed that position on two grounds:

  1. Your original pledge did not say "forever." However, it did clearly imply that no salary would be taken while you were a supervisor. The only way you can remain consistent with this pledge would be to keep your promise not to take a salary for your current term, and when and if you run for re-election, tell the voters you no longer plan to work without salary for your next term.
  2. Your financial circumstances have changed, since your mother-in-law requires assisted living/medical expenses. I'm sure many of your constituents are sympathetic to this problem, but as you well know, a huge number of them have financial problems well beyond your own.

Although you can take back your promise, your voters cannot take back their votes. Therein lies the problem. I would invite you to reconsider and withdraw your decision on reneging on this promise within the next 30 days. Barring this reconsideration and reversal, I will start a recall petition so voters can take action based on your broken promise to them.

Sincerely yours,

Michael G. Stogner, San Mateo County resident

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

George Muteff January 10, 2013 at 06:45 PM
Although replying to you, it applies to all. I voted for Horsley because I find him to be level headed, thoughtful, earnest in his efforts and I believe he has and will continue to do what he feels is best for the County. Those are all good reasons, but probably the most important reason I voted for him is that I know that if I have an issue that is important to me, I can call him and not only will he take the call, but he will listen. Now we may agree or disagree on any particular issue, but the fact that he will listen and consider whatever input I may have on something is important to me. That should be important to all in the County. He saved this County over $250,000.00 over the last two years that we can specifically identify. How much did you, or the others that are so quick to call Horsley a liar and question his personal matters, save the County? Anything? Make of the matter what you will, but Mr Horsley has not lost my vote over this. He took a $250K hit over two years for us. How much have you contributed?
The Pacifican January 10, 2013 at 07:09 PM
"Make of the matter what you will, but Mr Horsley has not lost my vote over this. He took a $250K hit over two years for us. How much have you contributed?" That's funny, George. I look at it that he cost us well over that with that big fat public pension he is already receiving. No one that I know receives anything close to that. You have a right to vote for him. You have a right to be an apologist for him. Hell, he has the right to lie to us. But I hold the bar for my vote much higher than you do yours. I want my elected officials to say what they mean and mean what they say. Apparently, as long as you can call him up and he will listen to you, you think he is worthy. I've got some 900 numbers I could send you that would do the same thing and, in addition, give you a happy ending. And for you to arrogantly frame this to me and others as: "How much have you contributed?" You have no idea how much we have "contributed". Many of us have worked long, hard hours, and at great personal sacrifice, for our municipalities and for various charities and for absolutely nothing other than a sense of accomplishment and giving back. Now there are two people I would never vote for under any circumstance: 1. Don Horsely 2. George Muteff And George, aren't you the jerk who shoots dogs? . .
George Muteff January 10, 2013 at 08:52 PM
"I look at it that he cost us well over that with that big fat public pension he is already receiving." So, it's not the fact that Horsley went two years without collecting his rightful compensation that is troubling you - it's not that he directly saved the County over a quarter of a million dollars that troubles you (and you have contributed what?) - the root of your issue is Horsley's double-dipping. That is an understandable point, but that is how the rules are set-up. If you don't like the rules, change them. You seem to relish droning and ranting about points that are abstract to the issue(s) here, and you do it with attitude to boot. That, The Pacifican, is a personal problem. You allege that you "contribute" - "long, hard hours, and at great personal sacrifice, for our municipalities and for various charities and for absolutely nothing other than a sense of accomplishment and giving back." That is admirable, but irrelevant here. There is no way to quantify that in dollars. We can, however, quantify Horsley's contribution in forgoing two years of duly earned compensation; http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_22335169/horsley-accept-salary-work-san-mateo-county-board?IADID=Search-www.mercurynews.com-www.mercurynews.com "But I hold the bar for my vote much higher than you do yours." An assumption and simply your opinion; but then what is one to expect from emotionally charged ranting? Have a nice day, Pacifican.
James Lee Han January 10, 2013 at 10:43 PM
Aim higher? Is holding local elected officials accountable for their campaign promises too trivial for some people?
James Lee Han January 10, 2013 at 10:45 PM
Excellent breakdown, Mr. Stogner. I will personally support any potential recall effort and will ask the groups I am involved with to endorse such a recall if the need arises.
James Lee Han January 10, 2013 at 11:14 PM
Back when Horsley was running for Supervisor he was challenged by progressive Coastside activist April Vargas. Compared to Horsley, Vargas was on the correct side of the issues, calling for by-district elections and opposing Cargill/DMB's ridiculous proposed development of thousands on housing units on the old Leslie salt ponds. Vargas was also a principled supporter of the labor rank-and-file, calling for a reduction in San Mateo County's ridiculously high manager-to-worker ratio that was burdening the county budget. She was a great opponent and had the support of a broad base in the county despite Horsley's ties to San Mateo County's crony-ridden political machine. So it's no wonder Horsley made the promise that he wouldn't double-dip, because he had to do something to neutralize Vargas's great platform. It's no surprise to me that Horsley went back on his promise, but it would have been nice had he proven me wrong.
James Lee Han January 10, 2013 at 11:16 PM
Oh, I guess know we know why Horsley pushed so hard for the sales tax on the November ballot (Measure A). He claims "things are better" with the county budget now, but that's only thanks to a regressive tax measure that impacts low-income and working families the hardest. For him to advocate so strongly for such a regressive tax and then immediately reap the benefits of that is pretty brazen.
Laura Whittaker January 11, 2013 at 06:47 AM
Mr. George Muteff from Half Moon bay should come clean about his allegiance to Mr. Horsley while running for the council in that town. He also seems to be blaming or challenging those who are holding a LIAR accountable. Very sad indeed. Mr. Horsely deceived his entire County voters and I hope he is recalled. He is a shame . . .
Laura Whittaker January 11, 2013 at 06:50 AM
Hey, don't you like to shoot dogs?
Damiana January 11, 2013 at 07:27 AM
What's the deal with George allegedly shooting dogs???
The Pacifican January 11, 2013 at 07:27 PM
No "allegedly" about it. Just fact: http://www.peninsulaexaminer.com/2009/10/political-tsunami-in-half-moon-bay.html Condoning lying by elected officials. Shooting harmless puppies. Mr. Muteff has a lot to answer to - IMHO.
Enquiring Mind January 11, 2013 at 07:48 PM
The dog had entered a fenced area and was attacking the sheep. Not what I'd call 'harmless'.
The Pacifican January 11, 2013 at 08:08 PM
Did the confused/lost/wayward Boston Terrier puppy deserve a death sentence? I'll let the readers decide: http://tinyurl.com/cqzkxdq
George Muteff January 11, 2013 at 08:26 PM
Well Pacificat, at least you are consistent. You are all over the map emotionally with your Horsley opinions, but can't seem to find the facts you need to support your conclusions, so you attack him by calling him a liar. Nice. Then, when challenged, you again resort to personal attacks, on yet another topic that you clearly have no knowledge of - but, I gotta hand it to you - you are, if nothing else, consistent. Is it really that difficult to focus and stay on topic? or have you just got too much inside, too many uninformed and baseless conclusions to contain yourself? Either way, I don't have the time or interest. I've said my piece ... and evidently hit a nerve or two. It is much more productive to deal with someone who is rational, focused on the topic at hand, and actually has some clue as to what they are talking about. Again, and hopefully for the last time, have a good day.
George Muteff January 11, 2013 at 08:29 PM
Opps, my bad - Pacificat, as I wrote, should be Pacifican. I wouldn't want to accuse the wrong individual of wrong doing. Sorry Pacificat; it was an honest mistake. No disrespect intended to you.
Jim C January 11, 2013 at 08:46 PM
From what I've read, Mr. Muteff acted within the law. Perhaps your anger about the incident would be better directed at the irresponsible dog owners. Or perhaps on a post about dogs or sheep or anything other than whether or not a politician should live up to promises he makes.
Michael G. Stogner January 11, 2013 at 08:50 PM
Here is Taxpayers money being well spent, as reported by reporter for the Almanac. San Mateo County Counsel is spending time on the amount of signatures needed. WHY? I clalled Mark Church's Office way before I sent e-mail to Supervisor Horsley and Mr. Horsley has plenty of time to correct the wrong doing. Posted by Dave Boyce, Almanac staff writer, 20 hours ago Dave Boyce is a member (registered user) of Almanac Online On the question of which voters would be involved if Mr. Horsley is subject to a recall election -- by voters countywide or in District 3 only -- Deputy County Counsel Glenn Levy told the Almanac that the County Counsel's office has not yet arrived at a definitive answer. "It's a pretty complicated legal question because the county shifted over to district-based voting," Mr. Levy said. "Our office is looking into what it's going to be." "There's a lot of research that we're trying to do," he added. An answer to this question may be forthcoming as soon as Monday, Jan. 14, Mr. Levy said.
George Muteff January 11, 2013 at 09:03 PM
Jim C is absolutely correct. It can be so refreshing to see someone that actually has a clue. Now, to one I inadvertently missed from above: Laura Whittaker, from above, says (in part): "Mr. George Muteff from Half Moon bay should come clean about his allegiance to Mr. Horsley while running for the council in that town." What? Could you be more vague, please? What are you talking about? Any idea? Then, Ms Whittaker goes on to call Horsley a liar...and in caps, too. Guess that means it must be so. Just so it is clear: I couldn't care less about those that like, dislike, or are ambivalent on the matter of this topic. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. What is troubling, at least to me, is that instead of expressing an opinion, justifying it any way one wants - or not justifying it at all - is fine. In fact, I would think that's part of what makes a blog a blog. Getting information out and discussing it in a rational manner is a very healthy thing, IMHO.
George Muteff January 11, 2013 at 09:03 PM
It's when some come in with just plain nasty, blistering comments attacking someone on a personal level, unprovoked, that concerns me - as opposed to dealing with the subject matter. First, it obviously reeks of ignorance, whether on the topic or the individual (or both). Secondly, it may feel good to get it put, but it weakens any arguments one might be offering. Next, it is unnecessary and reflects poorly on the one doing it. Maybe that's why so many use a fictitious moniker. They want to appear to hold others accountable, yet want to hide behind an alias so they are not held to the same standard. Weak...very waek; but judging from some of the comments I've seen here (and other places) it is entirely understandable.
Michael G. Stogner January 12, 2013 at 12:41 AM
Supervisor Don Horsley has changed his mind and will honor his promise to only receive $1.00 per year for the remainder of his term. Thank You Mr. Horsley.
RM January 12, 2013 at 01:20 AM
Exactly. Why is this so difficult to understand? Republicans don't like logic, I've found.
Jim C January 12, 2013 at 01:34 AM
That's good news. I'll probably vote to re-elect him once his term is up, whether he chooses to forego a salary or not.
Chris Kiely January 12, 2013 at 03:00 AM
I've never believed that elected officials should give up salaries that were in place when they were elected. If you think someone isn't worth the money that comes with the job, don't vote for them. Having said that, if an official voluntarily runs on a campaign that says he/she won't take the salary, then they should keep the promise.
Michael G. Stogner January 12, 2013 at 03:13 AM
His official statement will be, “I made a commitment to forgo the salary and I will keep that commitment,”
Jesse M. January 12, 2013 at 04:08 AM
Wow Mr. Stogner! Way to stand up to Horsley. You did it! Nice work to everyone who called him out.
James Lee Han January 13, 2013 at 05:06 AM
Thank you Mr. Stogner for calling him out and helping to bring attention to this issue. The more people pay attention to their local government, the less likely officials like Horsley will be able to get away with such brazen about-faces.
Lois Garcia January 14, 2013 at 05:35 AM
Where do I sign?
CP January 22, 2013 at 12:41 AM
I add my thanks to those who kept the pressure on Horsley to keep his promise to voters. Thank you!! Now can we get whistleblower rewards implemented ? Pine's proposal for whistleblower reward shot down by Horsley and others. What are the County Supervisors afraid of? Bankrupting the system? If they have appropriate controls in place, as they should, minimal impact and cost/benefit then well worth the whistleblower reward!
Andrew Peceimer January 22, 2013 at 01:27 AM
Would Horsley have done this without pressure from Michael?
Michael G. Stogner January 22, 2013 at 02:17 AM
CP, I hope you will start another thread on this very important subject, I have been interested in for 12 years now. Supervisor Rich Gordon tried to bring an ETHICS standard for the Board of Supervisors to obey....They made sure he never tried that again. Supervisor Dave Pine is at least trying even though I think it is a watered down version of what is needed.....New Thread please.

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