Velie banished by KVEC’s Ron Roy

January 10, 2014


CalCoastNews’ Karen Velie has been bounced from the airwaves of KVEC/920 following station management’s receipt of a critical letter from San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson.

Velie, the news site’s publisher and co-founder, was informed of KVEC General Manager Ron Roy’s decision in an email from Hometown Radio talk show host Dave Congalton. Parkinson was angered by Velie’s reporting on a drug raid early in December, and elucidated his concerns in a two-page letter on sheriff’s department stationery.

After taking issue with a number of elements of the article, Parkinson wrote, “I would ask you to please investigate this matter and take all steps that you deem appropriate which I hope will include an apology to the law enforcement officers from the SLO Sheriff’s Office who were involved.”

KVEC manager Roy said he had been “concerned” for some time about controversies surrounding CalCoastNews. Several months ago, Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo served a letter on the El Dorado Broadcasting office in Los Angeles threatening legal action if the KVEC continued to have CalCoastNews reporters on the air.

“On a relatively regular basis there have been questions regarding her (Velie’s) reporting,” Roy said, “and I just got to the point where I am not willing to take a chance on letting something on our airwaves that will get us in trouble.”

Roy said “the truth is probably somewhere in the middle. My responsibility is protecting my license, and my people. I’ve got to make these decisions. I’ve talked to Dave (Congalton) before and I don’t want to deal with this any more. There’s been five years of this nonsense.”

The executive said he made his decision without considering the accuracy of the article questioned by Parkinson.

Congalton wrote on Jan 6, “It is with much regret that I inform you that El Dorado management is no longer comfortable having you appear as a guest on my KVEC radio show. This morning, our vice-president and general manager Ron Roy affirmed his decision to remove you from the broadcast, effective immediately.

“I can’t speak for management, but I know there was concern raised over a recent letter from Sheriff Parkinson disputing your reporting in the restaurant owner drug bust story and subsequent appearance on my show on December 17.

“I’m sorry to be the bearer of such bad news and I remain appreciative of all that you have done for my show, and all that you have done for the community. However, you will also understand that I can have no further comment on this issue.”

San Luis Obispo City Councilman John Ashbaugh and County Supervisor Adam Hill have openly discussed their “boycott” of Congalton’s show as long as Velie was allowed on the air. Ashbaugh has claimed in the past that Parkinson shared that sentiment.

KVEC’s Roy said his decision does not impact other CalCoastNews reporters.


And the hits just keep on coming!

Jorge Estrada

I’ll agree that to a great extent CCN was given exposure throught Dave Congatons’s advocacy. It is his show as and his performance was impeccable, nearing the brillance of good old Rush minus the ridiculousness.

Although I do not always agree with Dave’s opinions, he always affords all view points to have their day on his show. One example was Kelly Gearhart who would have served himself best by just pleading the 5th on Dave’s show.

I have great respect for law enforcement and the need to protect their safety. CCN may have rattled this balance and that’s not good but the public does have a need as well as a right to know what is going on. Better communication may have avoided this unfortunate position taken by the Staff, the people that can control what we know, how we vote and become good citizens of THIS country.

Kevin 99

I don’t believe you’re quite right about Dave “affording all view points to have their day.” I don’t recall anyone from CWS being on Dave’s show and, when callers began to express skepticism about what they were hearing, Dave would loudly talk over them before cutting them off and moving on to a more sympathetic caller. Question: Was CWS invited but declined, or were they even invited? Dave?


You’re so off base. Go listen to Daves show from December 4th. A caller named Rose got more time than anyone by far and she was supporting CWS all the way. Dave never once tried to cut her off and he gave her respect the entire time.

Kevin 99

Unresponsive to my question, Cindy.


I’m sure it was by their own choice. Mention Dave or CCN to most any government employee, and the knee-jerk reaction almost unified. In fact, several friends of mine (who are government workers – high and low-level) all had very similar words in their responses about Velie and CCN. Ironic.

Does not matter to them that CCN (and Karen) have been proven right so often in the past when “uncomfortable” articles come about. Sorry if you’re taken out of your comfort zone, but sometimes it needs to happen.


Wow, and here I thought it was illegal for the powers that be to suppress the press, who knew?


Well, the don’t have to suppress the press if the press is willing to suppress itself, which ElDorado apparently is willing to do.


Oh joy. Now we will have the radio equivalent of the Tribune. I can’t wait for the Truffles the Bear interview!


Whoever Ron Roy is, he sounds like small, spineless, p&%ssy


One way to know when an investigative reporter is ON to serious things, and not just tossing wild accusations which would be answered by lawsuits against reporter and publication, is when the heavy hitters try to erase or silence the investigative reporter. Is there a pattern here? The Velie grandchildren abduction by CPS, our so-called “radio station” barring Velie from broadcast or interview, a rogue cop stating he’d arrest a reporter/motorist for a .01 B.A.C. on a traffic stop?

This county is getting pretty iron fisted here. I can hardly believe it, because while I criticize leaders on certain points of their conduct, until recently I considered it somewhat harmless dereliction of duty with a bit of corruption maybe. Now we are seeing a reporter silenced? Time for the Department of Justice, if we HAVE one any more in D.C., to investigate a Civil Rights Act situation.

To belabor, a letter by Parkinson to a public media outlet of the sort that is described is an abuse of his authority, akin to something known as “prior censorship” in legal circles. He should instead run a tight ship and be ABOVE reproach for tax liens or abusive drug raids.

This is enough to make an American fearful of those in power.


I never thought Parkinson was up to the task of being sheriff, and this only furthers that view. I know he went to all the right places and shook all the right hands, but that does not make a good leader, just a practiced schmoozer.

When the stuff hits the fan, I think I know where this guy will land.

Papers, please?


All I can say is, “Wow!” You can’t make this stuff up!


How interesting, So Roy doesn’t care if her reporting is true or not !

He is simply buckling under to the local powers that be. How disappointing……..I’ll just leave it at that for now.

I wonder if Roy recalls when the local PD outright lied and said that Dan Blackburn was wrong about a certain video that existed? I wonder if Roy recalls that it turned out that Blackburn was right and the cops were lying, OUTRIGHT LYING. They didn’t say that they couldn’t comment, they said it didn’t exist. It was proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that it DID EXIST when the video surfaced in our local courts. Doesn’t Roy know that Parkinson lies, like when he said he didn’t know anything about the Doobie Dozen, prior to the raids?

I guess KVEC has now become part of the problem rather than the cure.


Most middle managers are weasels by default (else they wouldn’t be in the middle); I see Roy’s point (such a sad namesake for yours truly), but talk about spineless. Gone are the days when good men (MEN) stood up to corruption and bullying.

How ironic we have the government MANDATING anti-bullying training everywhere, when it is in fact, they who are the worst of the bullies.


Did the sheriff write a sternly worded letter to KSBY as well?


A small number of informed, thinking people are easier to bully than the low information masses who will not understand the entirety of the subject at hand but know how to react when the glowing box tells them a short story.


A letter ? No, but perhaps a campaign advertising contract starting in 6-8 weeks.

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