Just since 2016, County Supervisor Steve Lavagnino has taken well over $10,000 in campaign contributions from companies with business before the county. Specifically, three companies are seeking permits to drill more than 750 new oil wells in Cat Canyon.

There are legitimate concerns about the inevitable problems with drilling, and spilling, and the insertion under high pressure of toxic chemicals through the heart of our water basin — the San Antonio Groundwater Basin. Sooner or later this may have grave consequences for the quality of our drinking water. It also poses the threat of serious injury to our agriculture and to jobs.

My point here, however, is to raise the issue of whether our supervisors should be taking large amounts of money from companies that seek their approval for judgments that would result in significant corporate profit.

In addition to Supervisor Lavagnino, I imagine that Supervisor Adam would neatly fall into this same category as he’s been the recipient of five times the amount of contributions from oil and gas companies. If our county ethical codes do not expressly forbid such questionable behavior, shouldn’t these supervisors act responsibly by recusing themselves from decisions that would obviously enrich their patrons?


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