Politicians call foul over deceptive ads
April 13, 2016
By KAREN VELIE
Several Central Coast politicians are calling foul to this years barrage of deceptive political ads. In the race for Congress, a politician is accused of placing ads that exaggerate his accomplishments, while in the race for San Luis Obispo County District 3 supervisor, a candidate is accused of being dishonest in his attempts to smear an opponent.
Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider is demanding that one of her opponents for California’s 24 Congressional District, Santa Barbara County Supervisor Salud Carbajal, take down his “deceptive television ad.” Carbajal’s ad claims that as a supervisor he has balanced the county budget and protected tax dollars.
“Carbajal made sure our tax-dollars are spent wisely, balanced budgets, the largest rainy day fund in county history,” Carbajal’s ad says.
However, Santa Barbara County has almost $1 billion in unfunded pension liabilities and a growing stack of deferred maintenance and capital projects. Santa Barbara County spends more of its total revenue on pension contributions – 13.1 percent – then any other county in California.
“Salud Carbajal is telling voters outright untruths in his TV ad,” Schneider said. “Yesterday he said the county was in ‘a crisis,’ yet the television ad his campaign is airing says the opposite. Which is it, Salud? Have you protected tax-dollars and balanced the budget or is the county in crisis? You can’t have it both ways.”
In the contentious race for San Luis Obispo County’s District 3 supervisor seat, incumbent Adam Hill is running a developer-funded campaign that includes attack ads against one of his challengers, San Luis Obispo Councilman Dan Carpenter. Carpenter said Hill’s ads include not only distortions, but “outright lies.”
For example, one of Hill’s ads says Carpenter supports the Phillips 66 oil spur project and rural sprawl, Carpenter is a Tea Party zealot and that as a councilman Carpenter does not serve on any regional boards.
However, in Feb. 2015, Carpenter voted along with the rest of the San Luis Obispo City Council to send a letter to the SLO County Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors opposing the rail spur. And with Hill present, at a recent Tribune interview, Carpenter again voiced his opposition to the rail spur.
In response to Hill’s claim that Carpenter supports rural sprawl, Carpenter said he supports the Ag Cluster Ordinance that sets aside significant open space by clustering homes, not rural sprawl.
As for regional boards, Carpenter is SLO City’s liaison to the SLO County Economic Vitality Corporation, alternate to the SLO County Resources Advisory Committee, LAFCO, Nacimiento Water Project, Paso Robles Groundwater Basin, Performing Arts Commission, Visit SLO County Advisory Committee, and the Whale Rock Commission.
“Tea Party Zealot, total lie, I have never had anything to do with the Tea Party,” Carpenter added.
In District 3, Hill faces two opponents in the June 7 primary – Carpenter and former Grover Beach Mayor Debbie Peterson.
District 3, which includes Grover Beach, Pismo Beach and a portion of San Luis Obispo, has only 554 more Democrats than Republicans. Hill and Peterson are Democrats. Carpenter is not affiliated with a political party.
The 24th Congressional District consists of all of San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties and part of Ventura County. Voter registration is 37 percent Democrat, 34 percent Republican and 23 percent decline to state.
Candidates in the 24th District race include Republicans Katcho Achadjian, Justin Fareed, Matt Kokkonen; Democrats Carbajal, Schneider, William Ostrander, Benjamin Lucas and Jeff Oshins; and independents Steve Isakson and John Ubersax.