Given two recent lawsuit settlements and impossible-to-make monthly projections for revenues that are hit-or-miss, asserting a claim of $1 million dollars in the Athletic Commission bank account at the end of the Fiscal Year in two months seems…ambitious.
UFC’s lobbying firm in California is the Sacramento-based Platinum Advisors LLC. Tim Lynch from PA is UFC’s top conduit at the capitol. John Carvelli, the Chairman of theCalifornia State Athletic Commission, uses Platinum Advisors LLC for lobbying efforts on behalf of his Liberty Dental Inc. company.
OPEN YOUR EYES WITH TIES BETWEEN UFC AND CSAC COMMISSIONER CARVELLI.
Given the significant amount of cash that UFC & Platinum spent lobbying to get SB309 passed and to support Andy Foster politically, some serious questions need to be asked.
Questions: Why was UFC so heavily invested in Andy Foster politically?
- Why was UFC so heavily invested in keeping the Athletic Commission alive rather than allowing Consumer Affairs to sunset the commission and take regulatory activity in-house?
At the April 29th, 2013 state senate hearing, both UFC & Leland Yee expressed the importance of keeping Andy Foster as the Executive Officer of the California State Athletic Commission. Yee noted that the Governor’s Office was invested in Andy Foster as well. Leland Yee & Kirk Hendrick both focused their attention on attracting big fights to California.
Questions: Did Leland Yee talk with UFC officials at that April 20th, 2013 San Jose Arena event? If so, what was exactly discussed?
- What exactly changed Yee’s mind about Andy Foster after watching that event?
- Were the Feds wiretapping Yee’s communications to and from that UFC event?
- Did Leland Yee or Keith Jackson talk with Tim Lynch/Platinum Advisors LLC or UFC employees during the time that SB309 was ping-ponging back and forth between the state Senate & Assembly (April of 2013 ~ September of 2013)?
- If so, what was said in those conversations?
California State Athletic Commission Vice Chairman John Carvelli (image credit: Liberty Dental web site)
Approximately one week after SB309 was sent to Appropriations by Yee & other senators at the April 29th, 2013 meeting in Sacramento, Governor Jerry Brown’s office appointed dental HMO businessman John Carvelli to the Athletic Commission board. His company is called Liberty Dental. He is an associate for the Government Reglations Group consulting firm and deals with Medi-Cal consulting.
Screen shot of some of the various clients Platinum Advisors LLC has
Given the politicized nature of the dental industry in California, John Carvelli has had plenty of experience lobbying politicians on both sides of the aisle. Guess which lobbying firm Liberty Dental uses? Platinum Advisors LLC, the same firm that has both UFC & Station Casinos as clients.
Liberty Dental & Platinum Advisor lobbyist disclosure forms show that Carvelli’s company has spent nearly $400,000 in the last few years with Platinum to lobby the state Legislature over a variety of different bills & budgets.
Carvelli and Platinum Advisors have spent an extensive amount of time lobbying Governor Jerry Brown’s office on budgetary matters. Given the major budgetary challenges facing the California State Athletic Commission, you can see why Governor Jerry Brownthought that John Carvelli would be a logical choice as an appointment. Carvelli knows how Sacramento operates and has demonstrated his willingness to spend the cash to lobby politicians.
Carvelli’s big focus so far at the Athletic Commission has been attracting big fights to the state. His words often sound like they come from the same playbook both Leland Yee & Kirk Hendrick used at the April 29th, 2013 state senate meeting. Carvelli has repeatedly mentioned the idea of utilizing GO Biz (Governor Jerry Brown’s Office of Business & Economic Development) to increase business incentives in order to attract big arena events to California.
Questions: Given how much money John Carvelli has spent with Platinum Advisors LLC on lobbying and contributions to various political campaigns, has he ever met or talked with Leland Yee or Keith Jackson?
- How many times have Carvelli & Yee talked in the past?
- Would John Carvelli or Tim Lynch be comfortable enough picking up the phone and talking to Yee or Jackson about lobbying affairs in Sacramento?
When John Carvelli was appointed to the Athletic Commission in May of 2013, SB309 had not been passed by the Legislature. Eventually, SB309 was signed by the Governor in mid-September of 2013. There was a four month window between the time Carvelli was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown to CSAC to when the Governor signed SB309 to extend the life of the Athletic Commission for two years. Carvelli would obviously have a great interest in keeping the Athletic Commission alive since he had just been appointed.
Questions: If Andy Foster was approached by Leland Yee or Keith Jackson for solicitations of cash & connections in exchange for a vote on SB309, would he contact Tim Lynch or John Carvelli and give them a heads up? If so, what would their response have been?
In the short time that Carvelli has been on the Athletic Commission board, he created his own subcommittee on attracting large events and also found himself entangled in a “litigation sub committee” with Martha Shen-Urquidez. In addition, recent meeting minutes published on the Athletic Commission web site demonstrate Carvelli’s advice & influence regarding Athletic Commission budgetary matters. In the latest Fiscal Year, the Athletic Commission (on paper) broke even on revenues & expenditures.
The future of Andy Foster and the California State Athletic Commission
When the appointments of Chairman John Frierson, Dr. VanBuren Ross Lemons, andDr. Christopher Giza expire at the end of 2014, John Carvelli will be in the pole position to take over as Chairman of the CSAC board. There will be four seats open for new appointments.
Question: Given the Federal indictment alleging extortion of individuals trying to keep the Athletic Commission alive, will Governor Jerry Brown’s office double-down and stack the Athletic Commission board with fresh appointees?
- Or will Consumer Affairs attempt to shut the Athletic Commission down in order to temporarily move regulatory matters in-house with no public transparency?
The next Athletic Commission meeting is on Monday, August 11th in Los Angeles. It is highly unlikely that we will see any public comment in regards to the Federal indictment against Leland Yee & Shrimp Boy.