Friday, June 19, 2015

2014-2015 Monterey County Civil Grand Jury Report: SALINAS CITY COUNCIL MEMBER JOSÉ CASTAÑEDA

ABSTRACT: The 2014-2015 Monterey County Civil Grand Jury Report “SALINAS CITY COUNCIL MEMBER JOSÉ CASTAÑEDA” document copy is embedded. FINDINGS, RECOMMENDATIONS and RESPONSES REQUIRED sections are reproduced.


F1. José Castañeda is currently serving a four-year term, until the end of 2016, as one of the seven elected members of the Salinas City Council. He was elected to the Council in November 2012 to represent District 1.

F2. At the time of his election to the City Council, José Castañeda was President and a long-term member of the Alisal Union School District Board of Trustees (“Alisal Board”).

F3. The law is clear that a person who is serving in a city as both a member of a school board and member of the city’s council is holding incompatible offices and must resign the first office that he was elected to.

F4. Mr. Castañeda refused to resign from his position with the Alisal Board, forcing the City of Salinas to hire outside counsel to bring a court action (“the incompatible office case”) seeking an order to remove him from the Alisal Board.

F5. On September 20, 2013 a Judgment was entered in the incompatible office case removing Mr. Castañeda from his position with the Alisal Board and ordering him to pay a fine to the State of California in the sum of $5,000.

F6. The incompatible office case cost the City of Salinas the sum of $26,555 in legal fees.

F7. Mr. Castañeda has failed and refused to pay the $5,000 fine.

F8. Subsequent to the Judgment in the Action, the City began collection efforts, including a demand that Mr. Castañeda pay the $5,000 fine, but it gave up efforts when it was learned that he had no attachable assets and he had other civil judgments against him.


R1. José Castañeda immediately pay the $5,000 fine that is outstanding in the incompatible office case.

R2. The City of Salinas pursue the appropriate post-judgment proceedings in the incompatible office case to enforce payment of the $5,000 fine from José Castañeda to the State.

R3. The City explore amending the City’s Charter to provide for the removal of a City Council Member upon conviction of a crime involving moral turpitude or the failure to pay a fine imposed by a court.


Pursuant to Penal Code § 933.05, the MCCGJ requests responses to all Findings and Recommendations R2 and R3 from the following governing body:

• Salinas City Council (minus José Castañeda)

The MCCGJ invites José Castañeda to respond to all Findings and Recommendation R1.
June 19, 2015
(9 pages)

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