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ELECTIONS 38TH ASSEMBLY DISTRICT : Wilcox Attacks Boland’s Refusal to Release Data on Income Tax

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Assembly candidate Rob Wilcox on Tuesday criticized Republican primary election opponent Paula Boland for refusing to publicly release her income tax returns, saying disclosure of personal financial information is “an ethical requirement” of running for public office.

A Boland spokesman said her tax returns were private but added that she has filed state-required disclosure reports detailing her financial assets.

Wilcox took out a full-page ad in the current issue of a Granada Hills community newspaper attacking Boland for not releasing her returns.

“George Bush did it, Pete Wilson did it, George Deukmejian did it and Rob Wilcox did it,” the ad said. “Why, Paula Boland, do you refuse to release your income tax records?”

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The issue arose after The Times asked candidates seeking to succeed retiring Assemblywoman Marian W. La Follette (R-Northridge) if they were willing to release their income tax returns. Five Republicans and two Democrats are competing for party nominations in the June 5 primary for La Follette’s 38th Assembly District seat.

Wilcox and fellow Republicans Hal Styles and Al Thomas agreed to make their returns public. Democrats Irene Allert and Gary Crandall also agreed. Boland and GOP candidate Bob Scott declined.

“It’s not a legal requirement, it’s an ethical requirement,” said Wilcox, a La Follette aide. “It’s a question of whether Paula Boland is going to be open and honest with the people of this district or not.”

Wilcox suggested that Boland, a Granada Hills real estate broker, was trying to conceal her business dealings, including whether she has a financial interest in the massive--and controversial--Porter Ranch development. Wilcox has sought to link Boland to promoters of the project, which envisions residential and commercial development in the hills north of the Simi Valley Freeway in Chatsworth.

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Boland spokesman Carlos Rodriguez denied she has any economic interest in Porter Ranch but said her tax records are a private matter.

“Government already has too much information from people,” he said. “There are some things that are private, and this is one of them.”

He noted that Boland recently filed a state-required disclosure statement itemizing her assets, saying that gives the public adequate insight into her financial affairs. Boland has filed similar statements for the past four years as a member of the Los Angeles County Local Agency Formation Commission, which rules on city annexation proposals, he said.

Boland’s most recent disclosure report, which allows assets to be reported in very broad dollar ranges, shows she holds stock valued at between $10,000 and $100,000 in a holding company for a Granada Hills real estate brokerage she owns. She also holds stock in the Bank of Granada Hills valued at between $10,000 and $100,000, and co-owns a Granada Hills home worth more than $100,000.

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According to Wilcox’s 1989 federal tax return, he filed for a $295 refund on an income of $26,239. He paid $74 in state income taxes.

Wilcox reported receiving $11,993 in salary from the state as La Follette’s aide and $12,315 from the Lincoln Property Co. He said the Lincoln money represented his salary as director of the privately funded California Commission on Drugs. The group’s chairman, Richard Fore, is a Lincoln partner and financial supporter of state Sen. Ed Davis (R-Santa Clarita), for whom Wilcox once worked, he said.

Wilcox also reported receiving $3,000 from La Follette’s private campaign fund.

He said the money was for his work on a La Follette-sponsored task force that recommended breaking up the Los Angeles Unified School District.

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