Written by the Chronicle’s Cacho Prendergast for the Nogales International on August 24, 2012.
“Taxpayers have likely been footing the bill for positive publicity for three incumbent city council candidates, raising questions about campaign fairness as well as the direction of the city’s image-building blitz.
Ads that have run in at least three campaign-season editions of the magazine Border Eco show the smiling faces of city council members Esther Melendez-Lopez, Cesar Parada and Olga Valdez – all currently running for re-election – alongside photos of councilmembers Joe Diaz, Nubar Hanessian and Ramon Felix.
The top of two versions of the ad features a large photo of a smiling Mayor Arturo Garino under a headline reading “A government you can trust.” An alternative version reads “We are here to serve you. ‘You’re among friends.’” One ad shared space with another that promoted the city’s July 4 celebration.
City Manager Shane Dille would not confirm that the city paid for these ads, and if so, the amount it paid for them. But he acknowledged that they are part of an ongoing city ad campaign.” (Read more)