Dan Dellinger, a local political consultant, has responded to the allegations by the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office regarding work done on Measure F.
Dan Dellinger Consultants was contracted by the Pioneer Fire Protection District in “qualifying and then providing information on” the measure, a press release stated. The measure passed last November with almost 80 percent of the vote.
The press release noted that the DA had alleged “that Dellinger violated statutory restrictions regarding the expenditure of public funds for advocating for a ballot measure as opposed to simply providing neutral information.”
Robert Laurie, Dellinger’s attorney, filed a response that the complaint “is grossly defective for its ambiguities and deficiencies.”
Laurie goes over “undisputed facts” including the Pioneer FPD board needing additional funding and seeking a ballot measure, for which they contracted Dan Dellinger Consulting. Dellinger, Laurie said, “performed pursuant to the terms of the contract.” Dellinger was subsequently paid by County Auditor/Controller Joe Harn, “recognized for his reputation as a fiscal watchdog,” and the ballot passed with nearly 80 percent of the vote.
It is also noted that the DA is not suing the district, “the party contracted for the supposedly unlawful services and which authorized the funding,” or Joe Harn, “who actually expended the funds.” Laurie also said “Any monies recovered from Dellinger will not go back to the district but will go into the county coffers.”
Although he said it’s not up to him or Dellinger to “try and guess the DA’s motives,” the attorney said that the Pioneer district “acted very responsibly in taking the actions that they did and they were successful, in major part, because of the efforts of Mr. Dellinger,” especially with the approval rating of the measure. “Why in the world would the district attorney have a problem with that?”
Laurie has attempted to meet with the DA’s Office, but requests, the press release stated, have not received any response.
Initial hearings concerning the case will be held in January.