Adam Hill admits to impersonating opponent
January 19, 2012
By KAREN VELIE
San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Adam Hill admitted Wednesday he impersonated his political opponent, and now says it was just a joke.
On Jan. 6, the San Luis Obispo Tribune printed a letter to the editor from Sheila Blake, asking readers to help her convince LAFCO to vote against annexing the proposed Los Robles Del Mar development into the city of Pismo Beach. The issue has divided many in the South County beach community.
On the same morning, Hill left the following message on Blake’s answering machine, calling her names and claiming to be Ed Waage, Hill’s opponent in the District 3 supervisor race.
“Hi Mrs. Blake, I read your letter in the Tribune, are you a communist, or a socialist, or both or maybe a Marxist, this is Ed Waage. Just wanted to let you know what I thought,” the message says.
After listening to the message which she claims she did not think sounded like either candidate, she called Waage to tell him about the impersonation. Blake then allowed Waage to make an audio copy of the call, which he provided to CalCoastNews.
“I am disappointed that Adam Hill would make a phone call and pretend the phone call was from me,” Waage said.
On Monday, Hill received the following questions from a reporter and subsequently refused to answer questions about the phone message after being provided a transcript of the Blake call.
“I have a voice message that was left on an answering machine of a Pismo Beach resident who had an opinion letter in the Tribune,” a CalCoastNews reporter wrote in an email to Hill. “And while the call says it is from Ed Waage, several people contend it is you. How do you respond to allegations you made the phone call?”
Hill responded in an email on Monday saying the questions were “malicious, gotcha stuff,” and that he hoped the reporter was “confident that the constant campaign of defamation” against him “could not be proven to show actual malice.”
On Wednesday evening, Blake says Hill, a good friend, called to explain that he had made the call as an “innocent joke.”
“I acted so swiftly to call Ed (Waage), Adam (Hill) never got a chance to call back and tease me about the call,” Blake said even though it had been nine days since she had provided the tape to Waage.
Hill said Wednesday he did not remember making the call when asked about it on Monday.
“I did not even know what the heck you were asking about when you emailed me the night before you ran your story,” Hill wrote in an email on Wednesday.
The Save Price Canyon website has quoted Hill as telling its group that he is against the two large proposed developments that are winding their way through the system. In an interesting twist, planners involved in one of the proposed developments also contend Hill has said he is supporting their project.
When asked in four separate emails if he supports the Save Price Canyon group or those attempting to develop the property, Hill refused to answer, instead asking, “Why the hate?”