Stepping away from the Mongols

I’ve been on the Mongols beat the past few days so I got behind with blogging. There are a couple of stories I wanted to talk about.

1. Palin’s expenses: No, not the $150,000 shopping spree, but the doctored expense reports.

Gov. Sarah Palin charged the state for her children to travel with her, including to events where they were not invited, and later amended expense reports to specify that they were on official business.

The charges included costs for hotel and commercial flights for three daughters to join Palin to watch their father in a snowmobile race, and a trip to New York, where the governor attended a five-hour conference and stayed with 17-year-old Bristol for five days and four nights in a luxury hotel.

In all, Palin has charged the state $21,012 for her three daughters’ 64 one-way and 12 round-trip commercial flights since she took office in December 2006. In some other cases, she has charged the state for hotel rooms for the girls.

These types of stories have been my bread and butter in the San Gabriel Valley. I wonder what makes this story any different than, say, former water board member Dolores Holguin who racked up a series of personal expenses and charged them to the district. Holguin pleaded guilty last week to a felony misuse of public funds.

2. Only in El Monte. I was always under the impression that traffic lights were a major cash flow, but Rebecca Kimitch reports that’s not the case in El Monte.

EL MONTE – Cameras will no longer capture images of vehicles that race through red lights at two intersections, the City Council decided Tuesday night.

The council voted 5-0 not to renew a contract with Redflex Traffic Systems to operate the cameras at the intersections of Peck Road and Ramona Boulevard and Santa Anita Avenue and Lower Azusa Road.

The cameras do not generate enough revenue to be worth the man hours spent on their operation, city manager James Mussenden told the council.

“But it’s not about revenue, it’s about saving lives,” he added.

  • Hard-core Republican.

    Hello,

    Ms. McLain,

    I would like to know how you came about the Palin information. There is no attribution to your claims. Did this information come to you from out of the blue or is there somewhere you got it from. Do you have receipt copies of everything you claim Palin did? Let us know what a good journalist you are by showing receipts or crediting the story to those who have the receipts.

    Thank you,

    Palin supporter 100%

  • Anonymous

    It’s been in all the papers and tv news; there’s no doubt about the charges Palin’s made to the state of Alaska for her family travels expenses.

    Just more evidence that the only thing “maverick” about Palin is her unshakable belief that she is qualified. On that issue, she really is on her own.

  • Anonymous

    BTW, she’s got a link to the AP story. Click on the blue words, “doctored expense reports,” above.

  • anonymous

    Well at least she didn’t have somebody buy her a home and then sell it back to her at a below market price….you know, like Mr. Obama did.

  • anonymous

    for those people that believe that Palin can serve as Vice President i guess they did not learn the lesson from the 2 yoyos Bush and Chenney and look where they got us now, Palin was used as a yoke only but it didnot work like last time with Vice President Quayle in l988. And to the persons qho is asking Jennifer Mclain for the receipts, the Republican Party already admited that they spent that money and will be donated after the elections and only because somebody found out.

  • just curious

    just curious….when Hillary and Bill occupied the White House and went to Europe on business – did their daughter travel with them? Did Hillary and the daughter do any “personal” stuff while on these official trips? or was the daughter watched here by staff?s and finally who paid?

  • CALIFORNIA VOTERS X 6

    THE CRIME IS THAT PALIN TRIED TO HIDE IT. THEN SHE TRIED TO JUSTIFY THE COST TO THE STATE AND THE PEOPLE. NOT TO MENTION THE PEOPLE WHO INVITED HER…NOT HER KIDS. PRETTY PUSHY AND TACKY…EVEN FOR PALIN.
    SHE AND HER HUSBAND MAKE ENOUGH MONEY TO TAKE THEIR KIDS ALONG. WE HAVE HARD WOKING PEOPLE THAT ARE LOSING THEIR HOMES AS WE BLOG AND SHE HAS THE NERVE TO SOCK IT TO THE STATE. IF THIS IS ANY INDICATION OF WHAT WE ARE TO EXPECT OF HER…THANKS BUT NO THANKS…SHE AND THE OTHER DUDE RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT JUST LOST 6 VOTES FROM OUR HOME. WHAT A CASE ACT. NOT

  • Anonymous

    To California Voter X 6:
    You have Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac and the Community Reivestment Act to thank for people losing their homes. Barney Frank was in bed (literally) with Herb Moses, an executive for Fannie. Franklin Raines, another one of the execs of Fannie and Freddie fame, who left with millions of tax dollars was an advisor for Obama. Obama got a land deal from Tony Resko. Tony Resko is headed for jail. How about your candidate Obama sitting in church for years listening to the hate being spewed by Rev. Wright? Oh I forgot, Obama never heard it. He must’ve been the guy at the end of the pew, snoring. Does any of that bother you? This isn’t a vice presidential candidate. This is YOUR candidate for president.

  • Joe McCarthy

    To the Anonymous Moron:

    The CRA has nothing to do with the mortgage crisis: http://www.newsweek.com/id/162789.

    The Community Reinvestment Act applies to depository banks. But many of the institutions that spurred the massive growth of the subprime market weren’t regulated banks. They were outfits such as Argent and American Home Mortgage, which were generally not regulated by the Federal Reserve or other entities that monitored compliance with CRA. These institutions worked hand in glove with Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers, entities to which the CRA likewise didn’t apply. There’s much more. As Barry Ritholtz notes in his fine rant, the CRA didn’t force mortgage companies to offer loans for no-money down, or to throw underwriting standards out the window, or to encourage mortgage brokers to aggressively seek out new markets. Nor did the CRA force the credit-rating agencies to slap high-grade ratings on subprime debt.

  • Joe McCarthy

    Second, many of the biggest flameouts in real estate have had nothing to do with subprime lending. WCI Communities, builder of highly amenitized condos in Florida (no subprime purchasers welcome there), filed for bankruptcy in August. Very few of the tens of thousands of now-surplus condominiums in Miami were conceived to be marketed to subprime borrowers, or minoritiesunless you count rich Venezuelans and Colombians as minorities. The multi-year plague that has been documented in brilliant detail at IrvineHousingBlog is playing out in one of the least subprime housing markets in the nation.

  • sober & republican 4ever

    All of you bunch of idiot Dems have been drinking the punch Obama has been giving you and now you are all extremely intoxicated on yap.

    When you all wake up to the realities of this good-for-nothing wanna be somebody, your headache will be unbearable. Obama feeds you want you want to hear while really saying nothing. He changes his mind every time the views of the people change. Orator for the masses he is but qualified for the white house he is not.

    PALIN FOR PRESIDENT

  • Demo Realist

    Yeah, yeah ,yeah sober and republican 4 never….
    “I can see Alaska” where out of her $1000 hotel?…please…get real you fool.

  • Anonymous

    When you compare Obama with Bush-Chenney team, he is overqualified so in a way mr. Republican we are getting a good deal and just because Palin can see Rusia from Alaska, that does not makes her ready to be a step away from the presidency so i think is time to star voting wisely regardless of wich party you belong to…..

  • Anonymous

    So your both republican ANNNNND sober…guess that makes you a bit of a Maverick within your own party.