Tag Archives: Scott Dowell Chico Area Recreation District

Will the gas tax repeal make the ballot? Stay tuned!

2 Mar

Carl Demaio and Reform California are still working to put the gas tax repeal on the November ballot.  I believe (?) the deadline was Wednesday (Feb. 28) but have not heard whether they were able to gather the required number of signatures. 

Here’s what Ballotpedia has posted:


“The California Voter Approval for Gas and Vehicle Taxes Initiative (#17-0033) may appear on the ballot in California as an initiated constitutional amendment on November 6, 2018.”

Scroll down and have a laugh – Jerry Brown says, “I can’t believe the proponents of this ballot measure really want Californians to keep driving on lousy roads and dangerous bridges. Taking billions of dollars a year from road maintenance and repair borders on insanity.”

Listen, Moonbeam, you should think before you speak. You can’t believe it because it’s not true – proponents of this ballot measure have repeatedly said the money for road repairs is available but being siphoned off for other purposes. You’ve also just acknowledged lousy roads and dangerous bridges, for which you, as Captain of our ship, are responsible, and therefore, liable!  And yes, taking billions of dollars a year from road maintenance and repair to fund your pension borders not only on insanity, it borders on corruption, Sweet Cheeks. Should we have a court martial? Maybe set up a plank? Ooooo – keeeeel haul!

I think Brown is privately shocked about the voter’s response, lots of people have signed. I’m guessing the petitions were turned in, but it will take a while to verify the signatures. 

We’ve been talking about hidden taxes, such as the “franchise fees” the city and county are allowed to collect from utility companies such as Comcast and PG&E. This gas tax was shoved on us by the governor and the legislature, without any input from the voters.  For years now they – including Jerry Brown – have siphoned their outrageous salaries, pensions and benefits out of the road funding. I’ve sat in meetings many times and watched the local agencies pilfer “restricted”  fund to pay down their pension deficit, while roads and other infrastructure in Chico have turned to absolute crap. 

The foxes are in charge of the henhouse People.  For example, Scott Dowell used to be the finance manager for Chico Area Recreation District before he got hired by the city of Chico. While CARD allowed two public swimming pools to deteriorate to sub-code and sub-ADA conditions, Dowell made a extra $400,000 “side fund pay-off” on CARD’s $1.7 million pension deficit, saying it would save the agency money on interest payments to CalPERS. Meanwhile, CARD management has only started paying toward their pensions within the last two years, “classic members” like CARD manager Ann Willmann are only paying 2 PERCENT.  That all happened on Dowell’s watch.  Now he’s running City of Chico finances.  Next Thursday I’d bet my last $5 he’s going to lay down a pretty wild argument for a sales tax increase. 

Cause taxes are their heroin. As long as they can get a fix, put off rehab for just one more fix, one more fix, one more fix…

Just look at Chico Unified School District – they’ve had a bond measure on almost every ballot since 1998, and the last three have passed. But they are getting ready to put another bond on the ballot, because they just got new demands from both CalPERS and CalSTRS for more money, more money, more money…

You probably think you hang around with a nice crowd, but if you send your kid to a Chico school – any Chico school – you are leaving them all day with a bunch of freaking junkies. Wake UP!

A friend of mine recently asked me if I knew city council member Randy Stone is running for Butte County Assessor. I was kinda bitchy – I told her I didn’t give a shit who was running for election, because elected offices don’t matter anymore – it’s $TAFF. And we don’t get to vote for them. 

But, voting is important, especially the initiatives. So I’ll gas up the old election buggy and try to get it out on the road, try to start posting some news about the local candidates, besides just…YECHHHHHHH!

cause we can’t and we won’t and we don’t stop…




CARD took $400,000 from the “Long Term Debt Principal Repayment reserve” to pay for their pensions – that’s supposed to be for paying off OUR debts, not THEIRS

12 Jun

At last week’s CARD budget meeting, finance manager Scott Dowell said they didn’t use the capital projects money to pay off the CalPERS side fund, so I asked him where the money came from, and exactly what happened to the capital projects money:

Mr. Dowell,

At yesterday’s meeting, you said the CalPERS side fund payoff was not made with money from the capital projects fund.

The paper work you sent me earlier this year shows a balance of over $385,000 (note: this was a mistake on my part, it was actually just $345,000!) in the capital projects fund, now that fund shows a negative balance.  Can you please show me documentation of where that money went?

Also, you said yesterday the money for the side fund payoff had been “set aside” – from where and when? Could I also see the paper work from CalPERS regarding that side-fund payoff?

If you can’t send me these documents, I can come down to the office at our mutual convenience to look them over.

Thanks for your anticipated cooperation, Juanita Sumner

Dowell responded:

Ms. Sumner:


I have attached the CalPERS side fund payoff letter from July 2012.


In answer to your questions, I would like to refer you to the tab in the budget worksheet called “Fund Balance.”

This tab reflects the projected fund balance activity.  Please note the category of Spendable:  Assigned reserves.


The Accumulated Capital Reserve  is where the $344,500 for capital projects was taken from.  As noted in the projected ending balance on the Fund Balance tab, the positive ending balance was $45,132 after utilizing the $344,500 for projects.  The reserve is not in the negative.


The CalPERS side fund payment budgeted at $400,000 is noted on the Fund Balance tab as coming from the Long Term Debt Principal Repayment reserve.  As noted, the ending projected balance in that reserve was $928,968 after the $400,000 side fund payoff. 


Items noted on the Executive Summary tab under the sub title FUND BALANCE ACTIVITY actually flow back to the Fund Balance tab in point of reference.

But, Mr. Dowell, where do the “assigned reserves” come from? And I never found the exact “projects” the projects money was spent on. 

It doesn’t matter, I realized later. All that matters is, these people, including Dowell at $96,000/year, and Visconti at $112,000/year, are taking money off the top to pay their own benefits. They took $400,000, just plain took it out of a fund that’s intended to pay off  property debts, and spent it on themselves – they pay NOTHING  toward their own pensions. 

And  now they’re whining for more money, so they can actually provide service, imagine that!

I’m getting sick of these kind of leeches.  

Mr. Dowell, please get off my back, get your family off my back. I don’t want to carry you.