* Tustin City Councilman Jeffrey Thomas is playing politics with taxpayer money ("Tustin Pulls Its Money Out of County Portfolio," April 14), and the citizens of Tustin deserve to understand why Thomas is acting so fast and loose with their city's financial security.
Thomas, a member of the campaign fund-raising committee for John Moorlach--a political candidate who has decided to run against our well-respected County Treasurer, Robert L. Citron, in the upcoming June election--recently went behind the backs of other Tustin council members to persuade the city finance director to interfere with the city's long-term financial planning and withdraw Tustin's $4 million in funds from Orange County's investment pool. Thomas and Moorlach hoped that this political stunt would get them some much needed press for their fledging political campaign. But unfortunately, their stunt will cost the hard working taxpayers of Tustin.
In fact, during the first eight months of their most recent investment, the city of Tustin had already earned about $100,000 in interest on the money Citron invested for them in the county pool--an amount that Tustin Treasurer Ronald A. Nault acknowledged was a respectable return on its investment.
It comes as no surprise that Thomas' allies on the Tustin City Council were soundly defeated for reelection by two candidates who campaigned on reforming Tustin's City Hall politics.
Bob Citron has successfully managed the county's taxpayer dollars for over 24 years. He has repeatedly been honored for returning more earnings on Orange County's investment dollars than any other local government treasurer in California.
For this reason he has been endorsed for reelection by numerous Republican and Democratic elected officials within the county. I am confident that the voters of Orange County will overwhelmingly reelect Bob Citron to his seventh successful term. The investment of our hard-earned taxpayer dollars is too important to trust to "partisan political hacks" like Jeffrey Thomas and John Moorlach.
ASSEMBLYMAN TOM UMBERG
* Your article "O.C. Treasury Turmoil Puts Officials on Alert" (May 5) should put the residents of Orange County on alert. Apparently people in the financial world agree with candidate John Moorlach regarding potential problems associated with the present county treasurer making high-risk investments at a questionable time. Isn't that the problem which caused the downfall of so many savings and loans? This could be very dangerous and I appreciate Mr. Moorlach calling it to our attention. No matter who wins the election, let's hope this situation will be addressed in a responsible manner.
* Your editorial supporting Robert L. Citron for reelection (May 24) missed an important point: that Orange County Republican Chairman Thomas Fuentes has confirmed that Citron is being targeted for defeat, even though the job is supposed to be nonpartisan, because he is a "liberal, partisan Democrat." Even Republicans should be offended by that kind of reasoning.
* I am a Republican. I am a conservative Republican. As a Republican I have watched the campaign by John Moorlach for county treasurer against Bob Citron with shame. It appears that we have "partisan politics" at its worst and my party is the guilty one. It exemplifies why too many voters--and non-voters--have such disdain for both major parties.
We have a county treasurer, Bob Citron, who has a proven skill level, a proven track record and is extraordinarily qualified for the post. In contrast, we have candidate whose qualifications for the post are very arguable, creating a torrent of misinformed press releases that, while intended to discredit Citron with voters, also discredit our county treasurer's office with the money markets.
I won't engage here in a debate of the arbitrage techniques that Mr. Moorlach has attacked, except to say the rating services have not felt that the portfolio represents unusual risk. However, it is established fact that Mr. Citron has made well above average returns in good markets and bad markets, with high interest rates, and low interest rates. It is inexcusable to create the kind of misinformation Mr. Moorlach and Mr. Chriss Street are creating and then casually dismiss it as a normal campaign tactics.