Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Figueroa's Back Taxes to the Future

Former state senator still says taxes are 'current'; Lockyer hits back hard By Steven Tavares
Former state Sen. Liz Figueroa and candidate for a seat on the Alameda County Board of Supervisors has failed to pay property taxes for the past three years on her Sunol residence, according the Alameda County tax collector.

Figueroa, along with Nadia Lockyer, Hayward Councilman Kevin Dowling and Union City Mayor Mark Green, are heading towards a likely contentious last few days until next Tuesday's primary election. The Lockyer campaign seized on comments made by Figueroa Tuesday morning on the KGO Radio after a caller questioned whether her taxes were up-to-date. She responded by saying they were "current."

Tax records show Figueroa owes three years worth of property tax on a property she owns in Sunol totalling $13,939.96. Figueroa says she calls the Sunol property her "official residence" even though she admits it is uninhabitable since a tree fell through its roof. In addition, she owes $1,579.30 on a another home in San Mateo County.

Figueroa says she has "never denied" her tax problems during the campaign. In preparation of reporting Figueroa's tax problemsacknowledged her unpaid bills after a meeting of the Eden Township Healthcare District May 19 and said she did not live in the Sunol residence, but at a nearby rental in town. Sunol is located within the boundaries of the Board of Supervisors District 2 seat.

The trouble with the Sunol property started from the beginning, she says. After purchasing the home in 2005, she encountered trouble procuring permits for improvements, she says. Until earlier this year, Figueroa says she was under the "assumption" a tax impound account had been set-up to handle the property taxes. Once she became aware of the tax delinquency, she says she initiated a payment plan with the county tax collector, which she says is "current." The property is currently on the market.

The Lockyer campaign, which is also reeling from allegation campaign materials falsely portrayed the candidate as a "deputy district attorney," quickly jumped at Figueroa's characterization of the her tax issues. In a lengthy press release, Lockyer lashed out at Figueroa's comments saying it portrays her financial woes as systematic of the poor economy most Americans are encountering. "She has a plum political appointment on the California State Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board that pays $114,191 annual salary," the campaign said. The campaign also references $10,000 Figueroa lent her campaign last March.

Dowling, who appears to be the beneficiary of the Lockyer-Figueroa political feud, says he has paid his taxes and wonders why Figueroa has not. "Why would you run for office if you have not paid your taxes?" asked Dowling.

Figueroa called the scrutiny on her taxes "an attempt to distract voters" from Lockyer's recently disclosed financial report. In it she questions whether State Treasurer Bill Lockyer's recent $55,000 contribution to the Democratic Party was the reason she did not receive, at least, a split endorsement, instead of the full endorsement Nadia Lockyer received from the party. "I don't play games with this constituency," said Figueroa, "I have been here a long time representing this area."

The issue of delinquent taxes has been a common theme in Figueroa's campaign history. When she ran for state senate in 1998, her primary opponent and current Hayward Mayor Michael Sweeney sent mailers in the campaign's final days to voters describing her then $21,000 tax lien. The mailer, though, became one of the most infamous campaign blunders in the East Bay over the past decade when they included Figueroa's social security number. In addition, to making Figueroa susceptible to identity theft, two local politicians had recently been targeted by an unknown assailant, something she made a campaign issue with just days before the primary which she eventually won along with the senate seat in November.


  1. Nicholas E. TerryJune 2, 2010 at 4:32 PM

    (Air pump for being the first to comment, YES!)

    A politician not paying taxes is not news...maybe its news to the East Bay. If Liz needs a roofer, give her my seven digits.

    In the mean time, misleading truths on campaign material and manipulation of words and jobs is a problem, Nadia.

  2. Desperate times call for desperate measures i suppose .... Nadia Lockyer is pummeled by the press for a few days so she slings mud at her opponent to try to get attention shifted to them.

    Speaking of finances, looking at Ms. Lockyer's recent FPPC statement, she receives "nonmonetary support from her husband campaign to pay for her son's childcare. Ain't that nice to be able to use campaign funds to pay for childcare?

  3. Nicholas E. TerryJune 2, 2010 at 8:56 PM

    I'll say it. Redistribution of wealth. It's a habit.

  4. It's amazing how if Lockyer had been guilty of this, the Kevin Dowling/ Figueroa fans would be prowling this story like a story like a bunch of hyenas. The double standard is breathtaking.

  5. It's amazing how some Democrats have been placated by the Lockyer warchest in an attempt to buy a political office. ... whatever happened to the supporting public financing of campaigns. Now only the rich can run for local office. Thanks Bill

  6. Nicholas E. TerryJune 3, 2010 at 9:09 AM

    I'll say it again, a politician not paying his/her taxes is not new(s)...it's ridiculous, but THEY make it a double standard.

    If Nadia, Kevin or the other guy running had this on them, I too would call them out, but that's not the case. Until you bring something on Mr. Dowling and the other guy, all I've got is Nadia's misleading word manipulation and Liz's lies about property tax.

    So, all I needed to be was rich in order to successfully run against Mary Hayashi and NOT waste anyones time and money in order to do it? Damn! Don't forget, Bill has more money then Jerry Brown. If he didnt give Nadia a penny, she'd be running her campaign from her house and there wouldn't be nine billion signs up.

  7. I wish I lived in this District so I could vote for Dowling.

  8. Yeah, it's not Lockyer's "warchest" that drew me to her, it's the fact that she knocked on my door a few months ago and actually had a conversation with me. She was bright, empathetic, and actually listened to my concerns! (what a novel concept!)

    None of the other candidates have done that. Figueroa thinks she's going to walk away with this and hasn't even bothered to campaign while Kevin Dowling has been too busy sniveling and frothing at the mouth to give a shit about what's at stake. Dowling is repulsive. Does he realize that Hayward isn't the only city in District 2?

  9. Nicholas E. TerryJune 3, 2010 at 4:15 PM

    Mrs. Lockyer's door-to-door trips are selected. Don't be fooled. A volunteer of hers came by mine and I asked when she was going to respond to my two emails and calls, that I'd rather talk to her. After-all, her site promises that. Nothing. A lot of candidates walk to doors, but in a LARGE district, its often impossible for some. Mr. Dowling walks, as do his supporters, and I'm sure Liz has people out there. Your door is one of a few selected.

    Dowling is repulsive because? He DOES live in Hayward, and is on the Council. Nadia LIVES in Hayward and works for the COUNTY...that doesn't give her a leg-up. I am curious why you call Dowling repulsive? Care to share, assuming it's not what I think you're thinking?

    Nadia, as I have always said, seems to be the perfect candidate. And the perfect politician. Bright. Empathetic. Listens. If you don't like her, then she's faking it. If you like her, she's legit. Either way...I can's support someone who has no real track record in a local city or leadership role. Instead of showing how she's an effective manager, talking points are given.

    Mr. Dowling has experience at the Board of Supervisors level and city management; Nadia does not.

  10. Nicholas E. TerryJune 3, 2010 at 4:17 PM

    By the way, WITHOUT Lockyer's war chest (includes rights to his last name), you wouldn't even know who she was.

  11. You're making some mighty huge assumptions about me, Mr. Nicholas E. Terry. Since you're so keen on thinking you have everyone figured out, it is probably useless having a discussion with you. Good day!

    And yes, I understand that not everyone can make it out to me, but because Nadia Lockyer did, and had a conversation with me about my concerns (which she handled with knowledge and poise), she has earned my vote. Plain and simple. I also think attempts to belittle her experience a bit sexist. Sure she's not a career politician. But that's what I appreciate.

  12. Not a career politician? Nadia is worthless. She's just an affirmative action hack trying to ride on a couch to the Board of Supervisors. Give me break that this gold digger even has a shot at winning.

  13. Nicholas E. TerryJune 4, 2010 at 9:07 AM


    Assumptions make an ass of u and me, remember. I don't make them, my father taught me never to make assumptions, they are the mother of all f'ups. You called Dowling repulsive, and I am asking why. Since you're conclusion with having a discussion with me ended and started again, I ask again, care to share why you're repulsed by him?

    Sexist? That's the easy way out, Mrs. Anonyumous. I assume the Mrs. because never have I heard a MAN accuse another man of being sexist because he "belittled" someone. Addressing concern with a persons intentions is not sexist until someone falls to use pithy backpedaling, like you did. SNAP!

    Manuel...see Mrs. Anonymous's comments about sexist. Mrs. Anonymous, see Manuel's comments. Not that I approve of it, but he has a point...she's a career something alright and may I say, a bit repulsive.

    (PS. I received another mailer, in Spanish...get your facts straight, I speak American.)

  14. Dowling hasn't done anything for Hayward. NOTHING! Driven down Mission Blvd lately? A complete and utter slum. He's a snake with an apple and I'm not biting.

  15. Nadia gets your vote because she talked to you personally? Find Liz and talk to her too! She has more experience, talent, and understanding about how government works than all of the candidates combined! Empathy? Gosh gee whiz, is that now a reason to earn someone's vote? How about some understanding of the issues and how they impact everyone's lives. For instance, Liz has verbally supported the efforts to prevent the closure of San Leandro Hospital citing the loss of lives and jobs to the local community. How much empathy is that? GO LIZ!

  16. Nicholas E. TerryJune 8, 2010 at 10:20 AM

    Dowling ISN'T the only person at City Hall; there's a Mayor, Council, City Manager...numerous departments. Ever been to a Council meeting? Dig deeper then pointing the finger at one guy running for office, or run yourself.

  17. Well Dowling is part of the leadership structure of the City of Hayward and he's NOT DONE SQUAT in the entire time he's been there except drive Hayward further into the ground. He's a fraud and a snake. Thank God he's getting his butt kicked in this election. I'd much rather have Nadia trailing him, but it looks like this Gold-Diggin Affirmative Action Hack will go into a run-off.

  18. What a humiliation for Kevin Dowling. He raised a six figure sum for his campaign and got half as many votes as Mark Green, who raised about $1,000. Dowling is indeed a fraud, who, beside consolidating enough power in Hayward's Democratic Clubs to get elected 3 times, has done nothing for his hometown but brown nose the cops, firemen and every other public employee group he thought could advance his career. Dowling knew that Hayward was on the way to financial disaster, so he bailed on the City Council while the getting was good. I guess he did'nt count on being embarassed in the District 2 election like he was.

  19. Dowling deserved to have his butt trounced. He helped bankrupt the City of Hayward with not overly, BUT OBSCENE, pay for ALL City workers. This rattle snake was unqualified to be block captain for neighborhood watch yet alone City Councilman. Hayward is barely above Oakland.