Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Dellums Fails to Report Gift Travel

By Robert Gammon
Wed, Nov 18, 2009 at 11:44 AM

Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums admitted last night that he failed to report a trip to South Africa as a gift on his statement of economic interests, even though it was paid for by the South African government. The mayor told the Trib that when he originally filled out his disclosure forms, he mistakenly thought he didn't have to report the travel as a gift because it was paid by another government.

The mayor's admission also directly contradicts claims about the South African trip made by former top city officials Deborah Edgerly and Cheryl Thompson. They alleged in lawsuits filed against the city that Dellums' ex-chief of staff, David Chai, had said he paid for the South Africa trip and then requested reimbursement from the city in the form of a pay rasie and salary bonus.

Dellums and his wife Cynthia went to South Africa last year for an event honoring the former Congressman's work in ending apartheid. The revelation about the mayor's failure to report the gift travel also comes on the heels of the Express' report, revealing his failure to pay at least $239,000 in taxes from 2005 to 2007.

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