Montebello mayor wants questions screened

Montebello Mayor Rosie Vasquez has requested that when I interview her my questions go through a screening process. She said if I can not adhere to her “procedure” I can not interview her.

“My opinion does not matter,” Vasquez said Thursday afternoon. “I am sure you can get a story without talking to me.”

Below is a letter I received detailing her procedure:

February 19, 2009

Amanda Baumfeld
Whittier Daily News
7612 Greenleaf Avenue
Whittier, CA 90602

Re: Procedure for requests for comments

Dear Ms. Baumfeld:

Recently, there has been a series of miscommunications and incorrect reports by you and your newspaper relative to stories about the City of Montebello and attempts to obtain comment from me as the Mayor. I was extremely displeased with the report in a recent article that I was unable to provide you with an immediate response to questions you had on a certain issue due to my need to care for my grandchildren. As a former television journalist, I found that comment to be unprofessional and un-newsworthy.

In order to avoid future misunderstandings and in order that I may provide you comment on key City issues covered by you and the Whittier Daily News, I make this simple request. I would ask that any questions you may have concerning matters covered by you in which you seek a quote or comment from my office be placed in writing and forwarded to my secretary, Lillian Guzman, at her email address of:

This will allow for a clear dialogue and will also prevent any misunderstandings from my comments as Mayor. It is my hope that this simple procedure will be honored. I look forward to our future cooperative efforts.

Very truly yours,

Rosemarie Vasquez
Mayor, City of Montebello