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In Atherton, disparate views on what constitutes transparent government

Original post made on Jan 21, 2010

In the wake of recent criticism about the appointment of the new police chief and lack of disclosure about a $230,000 sexual-harassment lawsuit settlement, Atherton City Council members are doing some soul-searching about the town's responsibility to communicate with its residents.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, January 20, 2010, 12:00 AM

Comments (2)

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Posted by Rufus
a resident of Atherton: other
on Jan 21, 2010 at 11:56 am

Transparency ? Everybody who lives in this town have their own, "Gated Community".

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Posted by inquisitive
a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on Jan 22, 2010 at 8:32 am

This talk of transparency combined with other news comming from Town hall makes me wonder just how transparent Marsala has been.

In the interests of full disclosure I invite Councilman Charles Marsala to answer a few questions about his living arrangements:

How many days have you stayed in your guest cottage during the past 12 months?

Are you aware of Atherton\'s zoning ordinance prohibiting the occupancy of a guest cottage for more than 30 days within any calendar year?

Are you prepared to state under oath that you have adhered to this 30 day limitation as it pertains to 33 Emilie and any other guest cottage within the confines of Atherton that you have occupied.

Will you disclose the duration and terms of your lease agreement so that we know that you are not profiteering from another\'s misfortune and so that we know that this arrangement is limited to the 7 weeks you have stated publicly?

Are you inhabiting your guest cottage for business purposes? If so is it properly licensed and are you reporting your business income as required by the California Fair Political Practices Commission.

If you are in fact operating your business from 33 Emilie, have you reported and paid the necessary sales tax from retail transactions consumated at said location?

Are you willing to disclose the living arrangements you currently have. Including the rent (if any) paid to the individual\'s residence you are currently stayingt.

If the rent you are paying is less than fair market value, have you disclosed the fair value as an in kind gift in both your FPPC form 700 and your federal income tax returns?

Mr. Marsala, there many unanswered questions. You are a public official. As such the public is deserving of an answer.

We await your reply. These answers shouldn\'t require a federal investigation.

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