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Sinecures Add to High Cost of Government

Wednesday July 31st, 2013   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 8:45am PDT   •  

centralbasin_200x200Government waste occurs in schemes such as the federal stimulus, the GM bailout, Obamacare, and so forth. Government waste also occurs as a result of nepotism and sinecures, as in the case of Gil Cedillo Jr.

In 2011 California’s Central Basin Municipal Water District hired Cedillo as a “business development manager,” a position the district created specifically for him, at an annual salary of $112,970, higher than the approximately $90,000 annual salary of a California assemblyman. The business development manager post required a bachelor’s degree in public administration, business administration, management economics, marketing or related fields. Gil Cedillo Jr. had not earned such a degree but the district provided for his “professional development” and even paid Cedillo’s $22,000 tuition at Azusa Pacific University, a private school. So how did such an obviously unqualified person bag a gold-plated package like that?

As it happens Gil Cedillo Jr. is the son of Gil Cedillo Sr., a member of the Los Angeles City Council. Before that he was a California state senator and assemblyman, known for subservience to government employee unions, including the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) for whom he once served as general manager. The major quest of his undistinguished career was to secure drivers licenses for those who had entered the United States illegally. But Gil Cedillo Jr. did not have a six-figure job created for him just because he was a politician’s son.

Gil Cedillo Jr. also served as chief of staff to assemblyman Ron Calderon and as senior field representative for assemblyman Tom Calderon. As it happens the FBI is investigating the Calderon brothers and their dealings with the Central Basin Municipal Water District, a public entity. That could explain why the district is eliminating the six-figure sinecure they created for Gil Cedillo Jr., for which California’s embattled ratepayers bore the cost. But as CBS reported, under the terms of Cedillo’s separation agreement “no district personnel, including board members and managers, could say anything disparaging about Cedillo Jr.’s personal life or professional work.”

So a public water district creates a six-figure job for the unqualified son of a politician, picks up the $22,000 tab for his college tuition, and bans any criticism of the man and his job performance. That’s the kind of ruling class privilege taxpayers are subsidizing in the Golden State.

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July 2013