I shot off a question to Ironhouse Sanitary District General Manager Tom Williams asking about September stipends for any Director who may have claimed the Oakley City Council and the EC² The Collaborative from Sept. 27 on their time sheet. I was curious on the EC² The Collaborative because Mr. Williams thought it was somehow a good investment for $1,200 of ratepayer money to be spent sponsoring an out of District event for the Antioch Chamber of Commerce.
This was his response:
“Mike, Doug Hardcastle claimed one meeting (one stipend) for attending multiple meetings (EC2 meeting/City Council) in September. No other Directors attended the EC2 event. Have a nice weekend, Tom.
Unfilled with the answer because I said it was vague, I shot back asking which meeting did he claim? City council or EC² ?
His response was this:
“He combined multiple meetings into one claim, one $170 stipend. Sorry, it’s Friday and I’m already late to meet the wife for dinner. I’m signing off.” Tom
While I can appreciate him making one claim, no claim should have been filed as he is running for Oakley City Council and Ironhouse was not on any of the September agenda’s. If he is a candidate for Council, he should show up anyway.
The EC2 event is unclear why he would even make this claim considering he used it as a campaign move after he made a post about the event on his Hardcastle campaign Facebook page. So was he a Director or candidate? That remains unclear. The smell test is simple, it was an event hosted by the Antioch Chamber of Commerce and he could have just watched it on TV a few weeks later and cost ratepayers nothing.
What Hardcastle needs to realize is once he decided to run for Oakley City Council, those stipends for City Council meetings needed to stop along with anything else where campaigning could occur. There is a fine line that I believe is being crossed.
Ironhouse Management should have known better than to allow the claim to go forward considering Hardcastle is a candidate. Had their been $0 claimed, I’d be writing an applaud piece towards him because he wouldn’t have crossed an ethical line.