Paper goes after political consultant

This just in from the Nice-work-if-you-can-get-it Department.

That all-around muckraker, curmudgeon and editor/publisher of the Sacramento Valley Mirror, Tim Crews, wants to know why political consultant David Reade, who also happens to serve as chief of staff for Assemblyman Doug LaMalfa, R-Richvale, has not filed paperwork with the state declaring outside income from his political consulting firm.

Crews’ paper circulates in Glenn County, which is within LaMalfa’s sprawling 2nd District, in which the assemblyman was just re-elected by a staggering margin of votes.

Crews has published two stories claiming Reade’s consulting firm, DSR, was paid more than $90,000 by LaMalfa for campaign work from January 2003 to Oct. 15, 2004. This income comes in addition to Reade’s $90,000 salary for work as LaMalfa’s chief of staff. Indeed, a cursory investigation of the secretary of state’s Web page shows that just this year the LaMalfa campaign paid DSR more than $50,000 for consulting work.

Crews points out in his Dec. 4 issue that Reade has failed to properly declare to the Assembly Rules Committee that he had this outside income.

Crews made an e-mail request to the Rules Committee on Nov. 16 for a copy of any such statement. Two weeks later he was informed by the committee that there is no such declaration on file with the committee.

According to Crews’ story, the state Fair Political Practices Commission reports failing to file the notice could result in a $5,000 fine.

“I want to know if the FPPC will do anything, absent this newspaper [filing a complaint],” Crews said.

He added that his attempts to contact Reade, the son-in-law of the late Butte County politician and Assemblyman Bernie Richter, were unsuccessful.

Reade did respond to a question from this paper asking what the story was behind his two incomes.

“Same as it’s been for years,” Reade said via e-mail. “I continue to help conservative Republican candidates running for elective office, on my own time, just as hundreds of other legislative staff people on both sides of the aisle do so each election cycle.”

Crews’ responded, "That’s fine; he just has to file a statement."