Former Fountain Valley Councilman Larry Crandall is not seeking election this November. But that doesn’t mean he is done meddling with Fountain Valley politics.
Crandall called one of this year’s City Council candidates, Tom Nguyen, this week. Crandall wanted to give Nguyen his “personal advice.” Crandall told Nguyen that he sees “too many of our campaign signs” and he suggested that Nguyen in particular shouldn’t put up any more signs.
Crandall didn’t stop there. He went on to say that he was going to call for a “Special City Council” meeting immediately to make a new law ordinance to limit campaign signs right away.
Crandall then jumped the shark. He then told Nguyen that Fountain Valley is “not” like Westminster, where you can put out signs.
Now what do you suppose Crandall meant by that? It is a pretty obvious dig at the growing Vietnamese American community in Fountain Valley.
The trends are not in Crandall’s favor. Here are the latest Fountain Valley demographics:
- White alone – 25,698 (46.2%)
- Asian alone – 19,433 (35.0%)
- Hispanic – 8,128 (14.6%)
- Two or more races – 1,448 (2.6%)
- Black alone – 781 (1.4%)
- Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone – 61 (0.1%)
- American Indian alone – 30 (0.05%)
- Other race alone – 16 (0.03%)
I don’t know what Crandall’s beef is. Vietnamese Americans understand the value of education and hard work. They tend to start businesses and create jobs. They support family values and lean towards the GOP. But apparently Crandall doesn’t like seeing signs with Vietnamese surnames on them in “his” town.
Then again perhaps we do know what Crandall’s motivation is. The last time the Fountain Valley City Council actually negotiated a new contract with their waste hauler, Rainbow, was in 2006. They signed a 12 year contract that requires a three year notice of non-renewal. The FV City Council must request cancellation by 2015 otherwise the trash contract will auto-renew. And of course Rainbow has been giving large campaign donations to the incumbents. So you see the sign issue is a red herring. Crandall is going after Nguyen because Nguyen has promised that he will end Rainbow’s trash monopoly!
There are nine candidates running for Mayor Michael Vo’s seat in November – plus the seats of his colleagues on the City Council: Mark McCurdy, and John Collins.
The candidates include the incumbents plus:
- Kim Constantine, Businesswoman
- Jonathan Bao Huynh, Chiropractor/Restaurant Owner
- Tuan Nguyen, Scientist/Entrepreneur
- Patrick Tucker – Businessman/Executive
- Patrick Harper, CPA
- Tom Nguyen, Businessman
Campaign signs don’t win elections but there is very little time for these candidates to increase their name I.D. and the local Vietnamese community tends to favor candidates with lots of signs – and big signs too.
Crandall’s craven use of the race card is a sorry way for him to close out his political career. He is backing Harper by the way so if you live in Fountain Valley and want to express your displeasure with Crandall, please refrain from voting for Harper.
In addtion to serving as a member of the City Council, Crandall serves as chairman of the Orange County Sanitation District’s Board of directors. Crandall was first elected to the Fountain Valley City Council in 1998, and has also served on the Fountain Valley School District’s Board of Trustees, on which his wife, Sandra, now serves, according to The Patch.
Do you know what all that means? While Crandall is muttering and complaining about his Vietnamese neighbors he will, concurrently, be sticking them with the bill for multiple pension and health benefits he accrued during fourteen years on the Fountain Valley City Council and all those other boards. He also served on the OCTA Board and his Linkedin Page says he was an investigator for the County of Orange. This guy is a career government worker and quadruple-dipper when it comes to pensions and health benefits!
Nguyen, in stark contrast, is a businessman and he devotes countless hours every week to feeding the homeless, in Santa Ana’s Civic Center. Nguyen is in every way superior to Crandall and I for one hope he wins in November.
Voters should note by the way that Nguyen took down his signs from street corners in Fountain Valley and from in front of the local OSH. He is a good guy and I know Crandall’s criticism hurt him. Well now Crandall’s words are going to backfire on him and on his allies.