CITY HALL — Councilman Ara Najarian on Tuesday cited “extreme disappointment” in a $9,000 settlement agreement between his colleague, Dave Weaver, and state officials for violating elections laws in 2005.
The settlement proposal, which must still be approved by the California Fair Political Practice Commission, was unsealed Monday. Elections officials opened their investigation in 2006 and determined that Weaver violated financial reporting and fundraising laws. The commission is scheduled to review the proposed settlement agreement Dec. 10.
Commission investigators found that Weaver had violated state law during the 2005 campaign because he received $500 cash contributions — candidates can accept cash donations of only $99 or less — and that he failed to maintain proper campaign financial records, according to the commission report.
Investigators also found that he had accepted an “excessive gift,” according to the report. Penalties levied by the commission can carry up to $5,000 per violation.
At Tuesday’s City Council meeting, Najarian said that when he learned of the fine and the actions that led to it, he wasn’t sure how to respond. He said he considered calling for Weaver’s resignation, but that ultimately, it was up to voters. Weaver has not officially said whether he plans on running for reelection in 2011.
Still, Najarian said he could not remain silent on the violations.
“I think remaining silent would give the wrong impression,” Najarian said. “It would give the impression that such behavior is condoned by me personally.”
Weaver, who earlier on Tuesday said he was sick, was absent from the night meeting.
No other council members spoke on the issue, except for Mayor Frank Quintero, who said, “We are all disappointed in the FPPC ruling.”