During the run-up to Proposition R, Wilson had a relationship with board member Yolanda Salcido. In May 2008, the Union-Tribune reported, “Southwestern College’s board president [Raj Chopra] says that the board knows a fellow trustee [Salcido] is dating a high-ranking administrator [Wilson], but it has not asked her to recuse herself from votes that affect his pay or duties.”
Wilson oversaw development of Prop AA projects. Salcido and Wilson also played important roles packaging Proposition R. An August 2008 Union-Tribune article reported, “Next week, the board is scheduled to consider putting a property tax increase on South County’s November ballot to fund $389 million in college construction projects based on work led by Wilson.”
David Krogh is a member of the Bond Oversight Committee, charged with watching the expenditure of bond money. Members of the committee work without compensation. Minutes from one meeting report that Krogh asked about ethics and conflict-of-interest policies. The minutes from the same meeting indicate that Southwestern’s vice president of business and financial affairs, Nicholas Alioto, checked with attorneys and found that committee members should have filled out Statements of Economic Interest when the committee first began meeting. Alioto would be getting these forms to committee members. A Public Records Act request for the forms was made on July 27, 2010. On August 19, Chris Bender, the chief of communications at Southwestern, wrote in an email, “It has been determined that the Prop R Oversight Committee is not a required reporting body for the purposes of Form 700 [Statement of Economic Interest] filing.”
In a recent interview, Krogh said he thinks he recalls filling out a Statement of Economic Interest. Krogh also says that he asks a lot of questions about the bond work at the meetings. On the whole, Krogh believes that information has been made available to him promptly. He also believes that Alioto has been very active in obtaining competitive bids.
On the other hand, committee member Joe Casillas says he hasn’t been asked to fill out a Statement of Economic Interest. He has served as a planning commissioner, a housing advisory commissioner, and in many other positions that all required filing a Form 700. In contrast to other committees he’s served on, Casillas says the Bond Oversight Committee often has presentations that are “nothing but fluff.” Casillas expressed frustration with the committee’s lack of power. “There isn’t really a damn thing that the committee can actually do,” he says.