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General Contact Number: (530) 621-5567

2012

EL DORADO COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY VERN PIERSON ANNOUNCES THE FILING OF CIVIL CHARGES AGAINST DAN DELLINGER AND CHRISTOPHER ALARCON FOR ILLEGAL TAXPAYER FINANCED CAMPAIGN ACTIVITIES TO SUPPORT BALLOT MEASURE TO RAISE TAXES
 
Department:
 
District Attorney

Date:
7/27/2012
Contact:
James Clinchard

Phone:
530-621-6472

Today, the El Dorado County District Attorney's Office filed a civil Complaint against Defendants Dan Dellinger and Christopher Alarcon for fraudulently obtaining taxpayer financed contracts with the Pioneer Fire Protection District (PFPD) related to illegal campaign activity to expressly advocate a position in favor of the passage of a tax increase (Ballot Measure F) which voters approved in November, 2011.

The civil Complaint against the Defendants (doing business as Dan Dellinger Consulting), attached hereto for reference, contains five counts alleging (Count 1) illegal public gift under California Constitution Article XVI, Section 6, (Counts 2 & 3) negligent and intentional unlawful use of public resources for campaign activity in violation of Government Code § 8314, (Count 4) illegal acts of expenditure of local agency funds to support the approval of a ballot measure in violation of Government Code § 54964, and (Count 5) unlawful business practices under Business and Professions Code § 17200 et seq., for their illegal taxpayer funded express advocacy in support of a tax increase.

In May 2011, members of the PFPD were debating whether or not to hire a campaign consultant to assist them with a parcel tax measure. One of the PFPD board members received a phone call from an El Dorado County Supervisor suggesting that PFPD use Dan Dellinger Consulting, and cited to an impressive list of former local politicians. Information later provided to the PFPD by Defendants gave a detailed list of nine local politicians as references for Dan Dellinger and Christopher Alarcon, which included several El Dorado County Elected Officials (including a judge and a county supervisor) and two members of the California State Legislature. Ultimately, PFPD Board decided to hire Dan Dellinger Consulting with a contract for almost $30,000.

Under the terms of the agreement between Defendants and PFPD it is abundantly clear that Dan Dellinger and Christopher Alarcon were hired and paid, at tax payer expense, to expressly advocate a position in favor of a ballot measure to raise taxes. The impermissible, taxpayer funded, express advocacy of Defendants included the following:

 • An "Outline for Successful Passage" of the measure to raise taxes;

• A "win bonus" of $12,000 if the measure passed;

• "Coaching" the PFPD to generate positive news stories; • Creation of a "Parcel Tax Passage Plan";

• A plan for "neighbor to neighbor... sales persuasion" for passage of the measure to raise taxes;

• A plan to have at least three "push polls" (a political tactic used to surreptitiously sway voters toward the position of the poll taker);

• Creation of the "Argument in Favor" language to be supplied to voters in the election, which was signed by five other people as if they wrote it;

• Creation of the campaign committee "Save Pioneer Fire - Yes on Measure F"; and,

• Preparation and dissemination of flyers for a BBQ "Yes on Measure F Fundraiser".

In June 2011, pursuant to Penal Code § 932, the 2011-2012 El Dorado County Grand Jury ordered the District Attorney to file suit against Defendants. Shortly thereafter, Judge Suzanne Kingsbury granted an order releasing the grand jury evidence.

The civil Complaint filed by the District Attorney's Office against Defendants Dan Dellinger and Christopher Alarcon includes requested relief as follows: Counts 1 & 4 - restitution to the County of the $10,000 which was illegally obtained by Dan Dellinger and Christopher Alarcon for violation of California Constitution Article XVI, Section 6 and Government Code § 54964; Counts 2 & 3 civil penalty of $1,000 for each day of violation of Government Code § 8314, plus three times the value of the unlawful use of public resources; Count 5 - civil penalty $2,500 for each day of violation of Business & Profession Code § 17200 et seq. for unlawful and unfair business practices related to Dan Dellinger and Christopher Alarcon's fraudulently obtained taxpayer financed contracts with the PFPD related to impermissible campaign activity to expressly advocate a position in in favor of the passage of a tax increase (Ballot Measure F); and to enjoin the Defendants from any further payment(s) of taxpayer monies which may be due under the illegal contract with PFPD.  

Attachment:  Complaint for Restitution PC20120428