Home » Antioch City Council Gives Themselves $100k Slush Fund

Antioch City Council Gives Themselves $100k Slush Fund

by CC News
antioch

On Tuesday, the Antioch City Council adjusted its mid-year budget to provide $100k in funding to the City Council for community events in each District.

Currently, the council had requested $2k for each District and $4k for the mayor for city-wide events for a total of $12,000. However, during the council meeting, it was increased to $20k per District and $20k for the mayor for a total of $100k which is coming from the general fund.

The move comes as the council is using $4.617 million from the budget stabilization fund to balance the budget.

The increase came at the request of Councilwoman Tamisha Torres-Walker who called the $2k budget allocation a slap in her face.

“It’s bigger than just events, some of us up here invest a lot of our own money into the community and we know what it actually cost to be in these positions and actually what is needed to give back and do the hard work which is why I pushed for council secretaries because you can’t ask us to work full time jobs and ask us to work full time here with no support,” stated Torres-Walker. “I think $2k is a slap in the face and that was not my number, my number was more between $10k and $20k for each council person to not only do events, but communication, support, support community-based organizations if they would like to. Things that other city councils get to do.”

She also clarified she wasn’t talking about campaign funds and that no one is using campaign funds to give back to the community, but they were using their own money–she provided no examples of money she has spent or what funds have been used for.

“Anything between $10k and $20k seems reasonable” stated Torres-Walker who stated $2k was too low.

Mayor Lamar Hernandez-Thorpe agreed with Torres-Walker.

“I know I spend a lot of my own money. Along with campaign funds to put on community events,” stated Hernandez-Thorpe.  “I am for any number as long as we get started because you can always build on top of a number but we need to do something.”

Finance Director Dawn Merchant advised the council if they did want to build this into the budget, they should bring it back with guidelines of the types of things they could spend the money on to make it clear and within legal framework.

Torres-Walker called her request reasonable but on the low end it shouldn’t go lower than $5k which she called low. Hernandez-Thorpe suggested $10k.

With consensus from Hernandez-Thorpe, Torres-Walker and Monica Wilson, they directed staff to allocate $50k.

City Attorney Thomas Lloyd-Smith said he would work with Merchant to establish legal parameters for use of the funds.

A short-time later, the council revisited the item and amount allocated when Hernandez-Thorpe said he believed the amount allocated should be $20k each. With consensus, the cost allocation became $100k.

The line item will return at a later date with more specifics on what the funds can and cannot be used for.

Although neither Councilmember Mike Barbanica or Lori Ogorchock offered an opinion on the $20k in funding for councilmembers, as there was already a consensus prior to reaching them for opinion, both said Wednesday they would neither accept or use any of the funding.

Previous Stories:

election

You may also like

10 comments

Street Sweeper June 12, 2024 - 3:15 pm

Lol, sure why not?

FED UP June 12, 2024 - 5:49 pm

Wonder how many agreed on final amount before council meeting was even held?
Using money from taxpayers of Antioch to promote name recognition in future elections?

MODERATE June 13, 2024 - 5:27 am

By all means, let’s see a complete detail – with documentation – of all the “personal money” these esteemed public servants have spent in fulfillment of their official duties. They brought it up – now put up or shut up.

Teino Stingley June 13, 2024 - 9:40 am

Thank Youball For standing firm for change throughout these trying it good to read positive input that will go where it’s needed good job

Paul June 13, 2024 - 11:23 am

YEP. And all the kidney beating steel plates all over town and when they go and fill them in is a joke. These roads are almost getting as bad as the ones I road in when I was overseas. RIDICULOUS!!
Throw some money on these roads PG&E(crooks) have ripped up. 1 issue that bugs me!

Terry June 13, 2024 - 5:49 pm

I wonder if the mayor will use the mo ey to pay his fines. This city crimes start at the mayor’s office then the council

Chris Ming June 14, 2024 - 10:20 am

Whoa Dude.
This is WAAAAAY too much money
That’s a LOT of burgers and hot dogs. What could you POSSIBLY need $20,000 for???
BBQ’s for Relatives?
New Jet Ski?
‘Business’ trips on Luxury Yatch?
‘Business’ meetings at Five Star Restaurants??
Shuttle Bus Rentals so the Mayor can transport his supporters more efficiently to the homes of those Council Members he doesn’t like to Bully them?
In the interest of the ‘Openness and Transparency’ that some Members of this Council so fervently desire we should have the strictest reporting requirements.

Scott June 14, 2024 - 12:18 pm

This is the most important part and I’m okay with it if it’s within legal agreed upon guidelines and publicly shared during and after the money is spent. Transparency is key:

“Finance Director Dawn Merchant advised the council if they did want to build this into the budget, they should bring it back with guidelines of the types of things they could spend the money on to make it clear and within legal framework.

Torres-Walker called her request reasonable but on the low end it shouldn’t go lower than $5k which she called low. Hernandez-Thorpe suggested $10k.

With consensus from Hernandez-Thorpe, Torres-Walker and Monica Wilson, they directed staff to allocate $50k.

City Attorney Thomas Lloyd-Smith said he would work with Merchant to establish legal parameters for use of the funds.”

cynthia June 14, 2024 - 1:50 pm

Hahahahahahahahahahhahahahahahahahahahahahaha! Antioch biggest joke around

Russ June 15, 2024 - 10:28 am

Anyone believe Torres-Walker has spent anywhere near that amount of her own money?

Comments are closed.