On Sept. 14, Seaside Burghal Councilmember Kayla Jones absolved into Burghal Hall and handed over a money adjustment in the bulk of $490. On the receipt, the agent who accustomed the money adjustment wrote as follows: “Received from Councilmember Jones… to be activated adjoin any above-mentioned agreement which may accept exceeded Council-approved policy, awaiting forth-coming absolute assay of above-mentioned reimbursements.”
That’s a mouthful, ain’t it? Here’s why it happened – and why Jones ability accept to angle over added banknote in the advancing weeks.
Last month, a Sacramento-based political researcher called Juan de León, alive on account of who the hell knows (I asked – he wouldn’t acquaint me), filed a Public Annal Act appeal with the burghal gluttonous a array of banking information. He asked for Jones’ bacon and allowances amalgamation from 2016 to present; claims for agreement for travel, per diem and added travel-related expenses; and annal on city-provided benefits.
Seaside responded with 234 pages of information. There are no auto or technology reimbursements accustomed by the city. But attractive into Jones’ reimbursements has beatific her and the burghal bottomward a aerial aperture of addition out if she did annihilation wrong. That acknowledgment appears to be mostly no, a little accidental yes and a lot complicated.
“People are consistently absorbed in how the government spends money, and Kayla has asked that the burghal undertake an assay of her reimbursements and address if any are alfresco burghal policy,” Seaside Burghal Manager Craig Malin tells me. “As I speak, I’m not acquainted of any that was alfresco of action save for one.”
That one is this: Jones active up for a grant-writing academy in Hawaii and a Adolescent Elected Officials appointment in Seattle. Daphne Hodgson, the burghal accounts administrator who has back retired, told Malin about the Hawaii academy afterwards the fact. Malin’s catechism for Hodgson was, “Well, is that a big deal?” Turns out, Malin says, “Yeah, it’s a big deal.” The burghal action that governs out-of-state biking for electeds states you accept to get board approval in advance. Jones wasn’t acquainted of it then, but she is now.
A bigger accord is actuality fabricated over added basal reimbursements: aliment at basic meetings, for example, or a $12 sandwich she bought during a cafeteria affair with the Seaside badge arch at The Meatery. And an alike bigger accord is actuality fabricated over her ancestors affliction reimbursements.
The burghal in 2017 adopted a action acceptance electeds to seek agreement for babyminding or eldercare that action in the advance of accomplishing burghal business. There was no absolute placed on the bulk back the burghal allowable the policy; according to the PRA, Jones has approved agreement for $8,676 in childcare back the action took effect. Some of that comes from biking ($1,060 while she was in Hawaii, for example) and some while she’s at affairs or administering burghal business.
The point of the action was to aggrandize the basin of aptitude that can authority appointment above the “patriarchy.” (That’s Malin’s account – and his chat – not mine.) He says it’s a way to aggrandize the abeyant for bodies with adolescent children, or aged parents, to serve on council. Such reimbursements are accustomed by accompaniment law.
Jones says she’s beneath annoy as she runs for ambassador adjoin above administrator Ian Oglesby. She has association associates ytic her beard (she wears a wig in able settings), her female (she’s a affiliated mom of a adolescent babe and identifies as queer) and how abundant she’s spending on childcare.
“I’m audition ‘Don’t accept kids if you can’t allow to booty affliction of them.’ I’m audition ‘If she has addition babyish is the burghal activity to be on the hook?’” she says. “I actually was aggressive by Bernie and Obama and I capital to do acceptable for the community, and I’ve gotten these cantankerous old men who appetite to accomplish my activity difficult.”
Malin says the city’s alfresco accountant will adjust through Jones’ amount letters in the advancing weeks. If she owes added than the $490, she will pay it.
“The big account is that Seaside beneath Kayla’s watch… has the best band appraisement we’ve anytime had and there are levels of advance we’ve never had before,” Malin says. “We can allocution about how abundant a sandwich costs. If that’s what bodies appetite to do, we will.”
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