Frazier’s “Jeff Belle bill” on candidate accountability passes Assembly committee

Jeff Belle, source Contra Costa County Board of Education

Increases maximum fine from $1,000 to $10,000

Sacramento, CA – On Wednesday, May 10th, legislation by Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D – Discovery Bay) that will raise penalties for candidates for office who make willful misrepresentations on their candidate statements passed the Assembly Elections committee on an unanimous 7-to-0 vote.

“We can’t allow candidates to dupe the voters…to lie their way into office when tax dollars or the education of our children are at stake,” Frazier stated. “When the public’s trust is in question, the public deserves to know the truth when reading an official candidate statement. This bill holds candidates accountable by increasing the fine for any willful misrepresentation.”

AB 894 would increase the current fine for a willful misrepresentation in a candidate statement to $10,000. The current fine is set at a maximum of $1,000, which has not been an effective deterrent and has not kept up with inflation.

In August 2015, the Contra Costa District Attorney filed a suit in court, The People of the State of California vs. Jeffrey Belle, against a candidate for the Contra Costa Board of Education for knowingly making a false statement of fact in a candidate statement with the intent to mislead voters. In this particular case the candidate falsified his education credentials, his residence, and his criminal record. Instead of a punishment including a fine, he received only entry into a diversion program for offenders, despite the injustice perpetrated upon the voters. Anecdotal evidence suggests that this remains a problem in other jurisdictions.

AB 894 now heads to the Assembly Floor.

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6 Comments to “Frazier’s “Jeff Belle bill” on candidate accountability passes Assembly committee”

  1. Rjb says:

    This is awesome. This Belle character will go down in history as a fraud.

    This gets better every day.

  2. Julio says:

    RJB, we have to make sure he isn’t re-elected. Sleazy guy.

  3. Rjb says:

    He won’t get re elected. His name holds no weight now, except for a new bill in honor of his low integrity.

  4. Julio says:

    You and I have seen Antioch voters do much dumber things. They like to keep voting the same old bad stuff in.

  5. Dave Roberts says:

    “We can’t allow candidates to dupe the voters … to lie their way into office when tax dollars or the education of our children are at stake,” Frazier stated.

    This is ironic given that Frazier lied his way into office on the issue of tax dollars. He campaigned for office on the slogan, “People Before Politics.”

    But since assuming office, Frazier has consistently placed politics before people when it comes to taxes. Frazier has rarely met a tax hike he didn’t like, including the $52 billion transportation tax that recently passed the legislature. The tax hike isn’t necessary because less than 0.2% of the General Fund is currently spent on transportation.

    It’s no surprise that Frazier has consistently received grades of “F” on the legislative report cards from the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association and the California Taxpayers Association. It’s also not surprising that Frazier no longer uses the campaign slogan “People Before Politics.”

    But it is surprising that he would author a bill that makes it a crime to dupe the voters when tax dollars are at stake. He should be one of the first in line to pay the $10,000 fine.

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