Taxpayer Association faults Mayor Rob Drake for misusing tax funds that benefit his campaign.
On the same day that ballots arrived involving the Beaverton Mayor election, voters received two taxpayer paid multi-color information pieces from the City of Beaverton featuring full page publicity articles for Mayor Rob Drake.
Jason Williams, Beaverton resident and Director of the Taxpayer Association of Oregon stated “Distributing full color pictures and letters from the mayor in the middle of race at taxpayer expense amounts to taxpayer funded propaganda of the mayor’s race. Mayor Rob Drake needs to apologize for authorizing this abuse of taxpayer funds and work to reimburse the city for the mis-use of tax dollars. “
The Taxpayer Association is calling for four measures to be enacted:
1) The Rob Drake campaign to reimburse the city for the cost of the mailing or report the newsletter as an in-kind donation.
2) The City of Beaverton to cease and desist all information mailings during the election cycle
3) The City of Beaverton to terminate their “You City” newsletter program unless there is a compelling and essential public safety reason.
4) The City of Beaverton to disclose the cost of each mailing and a list of prior mailings including (a) dates they were distributed and target audience (b) residents, voters, businesses, etc..
The “Your City” newsletter, featured the front page picture of Mayor Bob drake and his full page letter. There is nothing in the newsletter that actually provides any news of service to the residents of Beaverton. The 2008 Beaverton Recycling Guide on page two features a full color photo and letter from Mayor Rob Drake.
Jason Williams further stated, “The City newsletter states it is a “˜special edition Spring’ mailing. There is absolutely no substance or news of any value in the mailing warranting a special edition or alert to citizens. The fact that the mailing arrived on the very day ballots arrived must mean “˜special edition’ means special “˜electioneering’ edition. The role of city government is not take people’s money and spend it on telling the same citizens how wonderful they are. Our tax dollars would be better served if it went towards fixing potholes, funding cops, reducing traffic and supporting our fire department.”
— This is a Taxpayer Association press release. 5/8/2008