State cuts off Atwater from COVID-19 relief dollars due to ‘business sanctuary city’ declaration

Gavin Newsom is an extortionist.  He is telling the people of Atwater—and Coalinga—that unless you kill your economy, the businesses in your community, close the churches, end education, segregate people from one another, he will shut off money allocated for that community.  Yet, he is upset when President Trump tries to cut off money to California when the Democrats use government to protect criminals from foreign countries—illegal aliens.

“A letter was sent Thursday to Atwater City Manager Lori Waterman from Mark Ghilarducci, director of California Office of Emergency Services (OES). The letter notified city leaders that the state will withhold Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) dollars.

The City of Coalinga in Fresno County received a similar letter. Both cities have passed local resolutions that conflict with state public health orders.

Thus, Atwater is now ineligible for $389,000 in state CRF assistance. The first CRF allocation of $64,833 will be withheld until the city rescinds its resolution declaring Atwater a sanctuary city for all businesses reopen amid the pandemic and complies with state public health orders, the letter said.

“That’s absolutely criminal on his part,” Atwater Mayor Creighton said of Gov. Newsom. “He’s a complete dictator, and he’s taking money and withholding it from our city,” Creighton added.”

It is criminal—it is called extortion.  Maybe the DA needs to indict those sending the extortionist letters—what do you think?

State cuts off Atwater from COVID-19 relief dollars due to ‘business sanctuary city’ declaration

By Abbie Lauten-Scrivner, Merced Sun Star,  7/23/20 

Warnings of consequences for local governments that defy Gov. Gavin Newsom’s coronavirus orders came to fruition Thursday, as the state took action against the City of Atwater.

A letter was sent Thursday to Atwater City Manager Lori Waterman from Mark Ghilarducci, director of California Office of Emergency Services (OES). The letter notified city leaders that the state will withhold Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) dollars.

The City of Coalinga in Fresno County received a similar letter. Both cities have passed local resolutions that conflict with state public health orders.

Thus, Atwater is now ineligible for $389,000 in state CRF assistance. The first CRF allocation of $64,833 will be withheld until the city rescinds its resolution declaring Atwater a sanctuary city for all businesses reopen amid the pandemic and complies with state public health orders, the letter said.

“That’s absolutely criminal on his part,” Atwater Mayor Creighton said of Gov. Newsom. “He’s a complete dictator, and he’s taking money and withholding it from our city,” Creighton added.

Creighton said he doesn’t believe Atwater would ever actually receive the full $389,000, regardless. The city incurred $64,833 during its coronavirus emergency, meaning it is the amount Atwater is eligible to have reimbursed. Creighton called the larger dollar amount “made up.”

Coalinga is cut off from $216,000 due to its resolution declaring all businesses in the city “essential” and able to open, despite state public health orders. The first allocation of $36,000 will be withheld until the resolution is rescinded and the city complies with state public health orders.

“The state remains optimistic that these cities will do what is right to protect public health and safety in their communities and will move expeditiously to rescind their resolutions,” the state news release said.

Letters to each of the city managers from Ghilarducci noted elevated COVID-19 transmission in Merced and Fresno counties, where the two cities reside. Total coronavirus cases reported since the beginning of the pandemic in Merced County surpass 3,000 as of Thursday, with 27 deaths. The City of Atwater totaled 474 cases as of Thursday, according to the Merced County Department of Public Health.

“Merced County is no exception, as it has been on the county monitoring list for 24 days with elevated disease transmission and a test positivity rate of 16.7%,” the letter read.“Additionally, hospitalizations in the county continue to increase.”

“COVID-19 does not stop at administrative boundaries and one community’s failure to follow public health orders will negatively impact other communities.”

The letter ends by thanking the cities for their “anticipated cooperation.”

Creighton dismissed the assumption. “I will dig in deeper now than I have dug in on anything in my life,” he said, adding. “You can throw me out of office before I do that.”

Atwater City Council on May 15 unanimously voted to become a sanctuary city for all businesses and churches to open ahead of Newsom’s staged reopening. At the time, city leader said they were skeptical that threats of punitive actions would actually come to fruition.

“We did what we did to protect the guys that are going bankrupt,” Creighton said. “We are doing everything in our power to project our citizens both against COVID-19 and the financial disaster that is facing us right now,” he added.

Since the sanctuary city resolution was declared, Creighton said he has remained optimistic but noted that communication with county and state officials has been limited or threatening. A majority of local businesses aren’t even open, he said, especially since the state OES strike team stepped in.

The team consists of officials from the California Highway Patrol, Alcohol Beverage Control, the Department of Consumer Affairs and others to enforce state-mandated closures.

Creighton said he remains confident that his constituents, and President Donald Trump, are on Atwater’s side. The governor, however, has “failed miserably,” Creighton said.

“They have no solution, they have no clue what the hell they’re doing as far as this pandemic,” Creighton said of state officials. “At least now we know they’re not there to help us — they’re there to crush us,” he added.

Atwater City Council members say they stand by the city’s “sanctuary city” resolution for businesses and churches to open without local enforcement, despite California threat of withholding pandemic relief funds.

About Stephen Frank

Stephen Frank is the publisher and editor of California Political News and Views. He speaks all over California and appears as a guest on several radio shows each week. He has also served as a guest host on radio talk shows. He is a fulltime political consultant.

Comments

  1. From the same Governor that says the Feds cant hold funds from his “Sanctuary” cities.

  2. William Hicks says

    IF they need any CORONA Virus Aid in the future, my guess is that if they appeal to The Federal Government directly, they will receive it.

    What I would suggest is that any federal aid regarding the CORONA Virus coming from the Federal Government to California should go to Atwater first before it’s mishandled by Sacramento.

    I’d prefer having a pissing contest with Gov.Nuisance than President Trump.

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