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Garofalo a Poster Boy For Business Interests

January 27, 2002

Re "Garofalo's Sorry Example," Editorial, Jan. 20:

While accurate in its charges, the editorial does not paint the complete portrait of malfeasance that citizens of Huntington Beach were able to observe.

To many environmentalists and neighborhood groups, Garofalo was an obedient water boy for business and development interests. This irked citizens as much as any personal profit from his conflicts of interest.

To some extent, the local election results of 2000 were a testament to the outrage that community members felt at being patsies for corporate fat cats and outside special interests. Garofalo was the unabashed poster boy for the pro-business lobby in our city. Two reformers, including Mayor Debbie Cook, were elected over pro-business and special-interest-backed candidates.

The perception remains that Garofalo's excesses in office were tied to his water-boy role. This is the perception that other politicians must watch out for. We all should be on the lookout to prevent water boys from corrupting our local governments in the future.

Tim Geddes

Huntington Beach

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