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Author: Roger Bloom

Irvine City Council Votes to Audit the OCPA

During a special meeting on Tuesday (June 14th), the Irvine City Council voted to initiate an audit of the embattled Orange County Power Authority (OCPA), as pressure mounted from other cities in the Power Authority for a housecleaning of OCPA’s executive management.

The vote was 4-0, with Councilmember Mike Carroll absent. (Carroll is the chairman of OCPA’s board of directors.)

“There are questions that need answering right away,” said Councilmember Larry Agran in making the motion for the audit. Agran continued: “We need to determine what’s happening with OCPA and whether it’s even viable.”

Four hours after Irvine’s action, the City Council of OCPA-member Huntington Beach voted to support Irvine’s audit and also passed a motion of no-confidence in the Power Authority’s CEO, Brian Probolsky. Those votes were 5-0 and 4-1, respectively, with two members absent.

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Political Consultant Tied to Irvine Mayor Khan and Councilmember Kim is the Focus of an FBI Probe

Melahat Rafiei, a prominent Democratic Party official and political consultant who is a close confidante of Irvine Mayor Farrah Khan, was arrested in 2019 for allegedly trying to bribe two Irvine City Councilmembers, court documents recently revealed.

The news set off a wave of demands from Democrats throughout the County that Rafiei step down from her Party posts and her position on the Orange County Fair Board. However, Mayor Khan tweeted a defense of her close friend, mentor and 2020 campaign manager.

Rafiei owns and operates the Democratic campaign firm Progressive Solutions Consulting and WeCann, a cannabis consulting firm.

Mayor Khan’s re-election campaign this year is being run by Progressive Solutions, and Rafiei’s colleague in the firm, Cory Allen, is Khan’s 2022 campaign manager. Allen was also hired by Khan in September to be her Chief Executive Assistant, a City-paid position, raising ethical concerns.

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Irvine City Councilmember Larry Agran Finally Secures Special Council Meeting to Discuss OCPA’s Troubles

After months of repeated requests for a City Council meeting to publicly discuss the troubled operations and finances at the Orange County Power Authority (OCPA), Irvine City Councilmember Larry Agran has successfully been able to agendize the issue at a special Council meeting, scheduled for next Tuesday (June 14th) at 3pm.

Here is a timeline of Agran’s continuing effort to force OCPA to be transparent and accountable in its use of millions of dollars of Irvine taxpayers’ money. The timeline reveals Agran’s extraordinary perseverance in the face of united opposition from the other Irvine City Council members and Mayor Farrah Khan.

Nov. 28, 2020: The previous Irvine City Council, at the urging of then-Councilmember and now-Mayor Khan, forms OCPA. Khan and other supporters promise OCPA will deliver cleaner electricity at lower costs than Southern California Edison (SCE). (The City has loaned OCPA $7.7 million so far to cover start-up costs and initial operations.)

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