The Palm Springs mayor and a councilman voted against new, stricter ethics regulations


Palm Springs, a city that was raided by the FBI just two and a half years ago, has a new set of ethics rules after a vote by the City Council. Amazingly, two of the five members, including the Mayor, voted against the stricter standards, according to the Desert Sun, because they were “convoluted and hard to understand.”

Mayor Robert Moon, apparently taking a break from driving around town for shoes, and Council member J.R. Roberts, apparently taking a break from policing parking lots, voted against the ordinance.

Roberts said he supported efforts to make city government more transparent, but thought the new regulations tied the council’s hands and created a “minefield” for council members to fall into.

“Is there such a thing as going too far with transparency?” he said.

Moon said the state’s 1974 Political Reform Act had proven effective and he thought the move to increase transparency was a reaction to the ongoing corruption investigation centering around his predecessor Steve Pougnet, who, along with two real estate developers, is charged with alleged actions already prohibited under state law.

The new rules, which are stricter than California’s rules and probably necessary for a city who continues to promote a hotel project at the center of bribery charges paid for with a literal shit ton of taxpayer money, place stricter standards on council members voting on issues near properties they own or rent, establishes a “whistleblower hotline,”  forces more disclosures for those applying for land use entitlements or permits,  and prohibits council members from voting on issues that have to do with other organizations, including charities, that they involved with.

This all seems to make sense to most and, no, there is no such thing as going too far with transparency, especially when you run a city as scandal-ridden as Palm Springs.