A disturbing breach of protocol at ACHD has been brought to the GUARDIAN’s attention in which government paid public relations staff referred a TV reporter to the spokesman for a private political action group funded by local developers.
A GUARDIAN reader took exception to a KIVI-6 reporter’s story featuring only the information offered by the private spokesman hired by the advocacy group in favor of a vehicle registration fee hike.
In an e-mail exchange, the reporter told the GUARDIAN reader she got her information from the private source because she was referred to their spokesman by the ACHD staffers. Of course he failed to mention the fee hike amounted to 70% and exempted all vehicles over 8,000 pounds that do the most damage to roads.
But the most egregious item is the official ACHD web site which links readers to the same advocacy PAC. We wonder why they didn’t offer a link to the GUARDIAN.
By their own admission, they admit they can’t advocate on behalf of a ballot measure, but in the same sentence they send folks to the advocacy site funded by developers. Here’s a screen shot of the official ACHD website linking the site which favors the ballot measure. The agency has clearly used public resorces to favor one side in an election!! This is a violation of the public purpose doctrine. Idaho Code 74-604 reads: (2) Neither a public entity nor any of its employees shall use, nor shall a public official authorize or use, public property or resources to advocate for or against a candidate or a ballot measure.
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