Debbie Neev, a Laguna Beach resident and candidate for District 7 of the Municipal Water District of OC board (MWDOC), received a whopping $35,250,89 “campaign boost” recently from Poseidon Water. The Huntington Beach Ocean Desalination vendor acknowledged this relationship via the officially mandated form.
Other major politicos who received “help” in a similar manner, with similar gross sums around $35,000, were Tyler Diep, Cathy Green and Stacey Taylor. (Those forms are available to the public as well.)
Poseidon’s California Form 496 lists the money provided to Neev as an Independent Expenditure statement, filed on September 9, 2020.
Via subsidizing Neev’s slate mailers, the candidate is neither required, nor is there a legal compulsion, to disclose this as a direct contribution due to the manner in which it was progressed.
CWN is wondering why Neev accepted this controversial desalination vendor’s help, it certainly required her permission and collaboration.
What do they all get in return, surely no one naively believes that sums of funding this large don’t come without strings, expectations or IOUs, do they?
Neev’s campaign is being openly challenged due to this Form 496 now being circulated widely in the SOC water community.
Neev is running against incumbent Megan Yoo-Schneider in District 7, which encompasses Laguna Beach, Dana Point, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Hills, and portions of Mission Viejo.
Why is a major influence purchaser doing business in a totally different MWDOC district significantly assisting her campaign?
How could Neev NOT be aware of how much opposition there is, how much enmity exists between many potential desalination consumers getting gouged and especially enviro-protectionists regarding Poseidon?
How could Neev NOT know that over the years Poseidon has been accused of outright purchasing political will, and that the optics of this are not good?
This both looks and feels like Poseidon has its proverbial thumb on the scale, trying to monopolize the future of desalination in the OC.
As Desi said to Lucy: “You got a lot of ’splainin’ to do!”
Roger Bütow, Laguna BeachView Our User Comment Policy