Turlock City News

Turlock City News

Update: Mayor Lazar’s $1,000 Reward Matched Twice (And Counting), Up To $5,000

Update 11/17/08

Michael Rose and Marie Assali each have expressed interest to Mayor John Lazar to contribute $500 toward exposing who was behind the illegal and unethical robocalls made during the 2008 Turlock City Council election.

The robocall reward started with Mayor Lazar’s initial $1,000 and has now grown to $5,000. These contributions have been attributed to people advocating for ethics in Turlock politics and the Turlock community in general.

Update 11/08/08

Former Turlock Journal Columnist Ed Brault has now thrown in an additional $500 "for the person who can discover who the person(s) was behind those nasty calls at election time."

Turlock advocates have increased the reward total to $4,000 now!

Update 11/07/08

Jim and Pat Shade are now offering an additional $500 reward.

The reward total is now at $3,500.

If anyone else would like to add to this, contact Mayor Lazar or email submissions@turlockcitynews.com. Mayor Lazar suggested we keep a public tally here.


Update 11/06/08

Local veterinarian Dr. Rob Santos and his wife Dr. Kristen Santos, Turlock author and historian, matched Mayor Lazar’s $1,000 reward. 2008 Turlock City Council candidate David Fransen also matched the $1,000 reward toward restoring ethics in Turlock politics.The reward toward finding out who is behind the illegal "robocalls" has now been upped to $3,000.


Mayor John Lazar is offering a $1,000 reward out of his own pocket towards finding out who was behind the three illegal “robocalls” made during this November 4, 2008 election here in Turlock.

Mayor Lazar said “People are sick and tired of these dirty campaign tactics. We’ve never had them in Turlock, at least in city politics.”


City Hall heard complaints about the calls during the election and the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) has been contacted. There are many laws regarding campaigning for public office and being in public office. The FPPC governs and enforces these political laws. There will most likely be an investigation conducted by the FPPC here in Turlock.


There has been word around town and internet chatter that suggests a Turlock City Council Member and/or a Turlock City Council Candidate may be behind these illegal calls.


Mayor Lazar wants to clear up any untruth and culpability that is being said of his colleagues. If one of them is guilty of being behind them Lazar said “the law will deal with them.”

Mayor Lazar said that the people of Turlock and any future candidates should not have endure anymore of these types of phone calls in the future.


There were three robocalls blasted throughout Turlock during this election. Two calls were said to be paid for by fake organizations.


One was suggesting Mary Jackson was a special interest candidate and that she basically catered to these groups. The call was stated it was paid for by Taxpayers for Safer Neighborhoods based out of San Juan Capistrano. This group denied funding the call.


The second call was stating support for Amy Bublak and Kurt Vander Weide and claimed to be paid for by Taxpayers for Safe Neighborhoods. There is no such organization registered on the California Secretary of State’s website.


The third call was an automated recorded call impersonating Mary Jackson as she supposedly was campaigning for NO on Prop. 8 by asking people to support a “rich, vibrant community that includes everyone, irregardless of whom they choose to love.”


The nature of support and bashing clearly distances three candidates on the ballot from the calls: David Fransen, Jim Sarnowsky, and Jeff Anderson (who dropped out early in the race due to personal reasons).


The calls have not been claimed, denied, and/or denounced by anyone except for David Fransen as of November 6, 2008.


David Fransen left an early morning November 4th comment on Modbee.com that says “As a Turlock City Council candidate, I must state that I disapprove of these illegal ‘robocalls.’ All the phone messages and insinuations don’t point to my supporters and I doing this. I would still like to state that this unethical and illegal action is not part of the Friends of David Fransen campaign effort. I’m fortunate to have supporters who have respected my requests to run a clean campaign from start to finish. I’m sorry this is happening in Turlock.”


After all charges against any insinuated parties are cleared, our Turlock City Council and community will be able to move forward in a positive way.

Related Article:
Mayor Lazar’s $1,000 Reward, “Robocalls” Investigation

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