Opponent requests another Ashbaugh investigation
October 30, 2012
San Luis Obispo City Councilman John Ashbaugh is facing another accusation of financial misconduct in his bid for reelection.
Ashbaugh, who received a $252 fine Friday for accepting a campaign contribution above the $200 limit, filed a campaign disclosure Thursday that reported a $1,200 contribution from Full of Life Flat Bread Pizza Company in Los Alamos. Matt Strzepek, candidate for city council and one of the four complainants against Ashbaugh on the previous campaign finance issue, requested Monday that City Attorney Christine Dietrick investigate the reported $1,200 contribution.
“I am concerned about what appears to be a pattern of disregard for election law by John Ashbaugh, who is aided by not one but two campaign treasurers,” Strzepek wrote. “Furthermore, I am very concerned about John Ashbaugh’s ability to oversee an almost $100 million city budget.”
But, Ashbaugh contends the latest reported wrongdoing was merely a filing mistake. Ashbaugh said he purchased a certificate for $1,200 in catering from KCBX radio station during its March fundraising auction. He then donated it to his campaign, he said.
Ashbaugh, who has admitted to sending several campaign related emails from his city account in addition to accepting the excessive donation from County Supervisor Adam Hill, voted three times to establish the current contribution limit of $200.
In addition to documenting the reported $1,200 contribution to Ashbaugh’s campaign, Strzepek also asked the city attorney to investigate a $250 donation on Mayor Jan Marx’s latest campaign filing. Marx, who is also running for reelection, likewise said that she reported the contribution incorrectly and that it did not exceed the $200 limit.