Last August, the correspondents association’s board of directors unanimously recommended the denial of a legislative media credential application by Katy Grimes, a senior correspondent for The Flash Report.
Grimes’ application listed her principal employer as The Flash Report, with Jon Fleischman as her editor/producer.
Association bylaws “prohibit the credentialing of any applicant employed by or receiving any compensation, directly or indirectly, from any lobbyist or lobbying association, any state office holder or candidate for state office.”
Mr. Fleischman, or his consulting firm, had received about $35,000 from Jan. 1, 2010 through Dec. 31, 2015 in payments categorized as “campaign consultants” on state campaigns, according to state filings. There also was a $3,000 payment categorized as “campaign paraphernalia/misc” and a $600 payment described as “grassroots lobbying.” (Click here to view those payments.) We let Ms. Grimes know of our concerns after receiving her application. Ultimately, the board felt those payments violated the above provision of CCAC bylaws, which are part of the Joint Rules of the Legislature.
To the board’s knowledge, CCAC has never recommended a full-time credential for an applicant in similar circumstances. As of last month, there were more than 110 media professionals — representing about 30 different organizations — with full-time Capitol media credentials.
In 2010, the correspondents association recommended that the Legislature issue a credential to Ms. Grimes, who then worked for CalWatchDog. She held that credential until she went to work for the state Senate in 2014.
Under the bylaws, “Applicants recommended for denial shall be informed in writing their right to appeal to the Joint Rules Committee and Governor’s Office, which shall have final authority of issuance of press credentials.”
|Payee||Filer committee||Expense description||Expense code||Total since 2010|
|Flash Report||Members’ Voice Of The State Building And Construction Trades Council Of California||Grassroots Lobbying||$600.00|
|Flash Report||No On 22 – Citizens Against Taxpayer Giveaways, Sponsored By California Professional Firefighters||CMP||$3,000.00|
|Fleischman Consulting Group||Yes On 32 – Stop Special Interest Money Now. Supported By Small Business Owners, Farmers, Educators, And Taxpayers.||CNS||$15,000.00|
|Jon Fleischman||Californians For Term Limits, No On Prop 28, With Major Funding From The Liberty Initiative Fund||TRS||$3,559.81|
|Jon Fleischman dba Fleischman Consulting Group||Yes On Prop. 48. Voters For Central Valley Jobs And The Environment, A Coalition Of Tribes, Labor Organizations, Business And Environmental Groups||CNS||$19,750.00|