Please Read The Words Of Long Time Resident Lee About The Motives Of The Friends For Fullerton’s Future Website and Tony Bushala And All His Connections with Fullerton Council Members Past and Present (Bruce Whitaker, Greg Sebourn, Jennifer Fitzgerald, Chris Norby, Shawn Nelson and Travis Kiger) By Barry Levinson

  1. 3 by Lee on June 14, 2017 – 9:39 am 

    “I have been involved in Fullerton politics for over 2 decades as a lifelong Republican. There is nothing new under the sun and there is nothing going on now that wasn’t going on when downtown was just a bunch of thrift stores. The opportunists back then always used the political process to achieve their goals. The pay to play system was dominated by the redevelopment machine and the rewards it churned out for the players who knew the game were handsome.

    The council was always effective at one thing, maintaining a crooked republican majority. This gave rise to the corrupt police department, the disastrous fiscal health of the city and the malfeasance that has left our infrastructure the laughing stock of the State. 

    This monopoly of power held in place by the centrist right working with the limousine liberals in Fullerton took care of its own and its own exclusively. This became problematic for those who wished to enter the ring and cash in on the looming development bonanza because no one was leaving their seats at the card table. This is where the left leaning libertarian political element on the outside looking in decided to run interference and come up the political sideline. These attempts were unsuccessful for almost a decade.

    The tragic death of Kelly Thomas in 2011 presented an unprecedented opportunity to harness the momentum of the masses and redirect all the rage against elected officials whose hands were tied by the judicial process and the police officers bill of rights. The people of Fullerton were livid as they lined the streets demanding justice while looking for leadership. 

    Tony Bushala, who for years, without success, tried to chip away at the power structure at city hall, had finally found a fan for the flames with his FFFF blog. He immediately bought the picture of the bloody face of Kelly Thomas, posted it and then ponied up $250,000 for a recall election. He hired signature gatherers and orchestrated a successful recall campaign that launched the political careers of our current city council majority, Fitzgerald, Whitaker and Sebourn as well as Kiger’s 6 month failure. 


    Kiger, Whitaker, Sebourn, Fitzgerald

    The prior years of taking cheap shots, mud slinging, and chipping away at the establishment paled in comparison to this political firestorm.

    Bushala’s connections to people like Chris Norby and Shawn Nelson were crucial in carefully charting the course he would take to orchestrate the payday he had spent decades preparing for. The city’s redevelopment agency was disbanded as a result of his crony Chris Norby’s legislative action in Sacramento.

    Meanwhile, he and his brother continued to amass a small fortune in real estate holdings in Fullerton, namely in the downtown area. It was always their intention as developers to develop their properties. The recall of 2012 was the moment they had been waiting for. No longer would their plans remain obscure and dependent upon the help of a handful of connections like Chris Norby or Shawn Nelson. Bushala finally had the control of the council after years of failing to influence the political process through his obscure web site. He now had the power to control the entire city with his hired hands. He personally bankrolled the entire campaigns of Travis Kiger, Bruce Whitaker, and Greg Sebourn and got them elected. They in turn would stack the various commissions to pave the way for the fulfillment of the Bushala brothers’ dream, high rise transit oriented development all over Fullerton and for once, they would dictate how and where these projects would be built instead of the “republigans” that controlled the council and the redevelopment contracts for decades prior. If hatched, this plan would have proven to make the Bushala Brothers upwards of 100 million dollars if the plans were to proceed over the next decade. 

    In a bizarre turn of events, one of Bushala’s hired hands, Travis Kiger was voted out of office 6 months later in the general election. The strategy of running Kiger for the short term seat may have been the safest short term bet but turned out to be a costly mistake creating long term uncertainty for the brothers.


    The wild card in all of this was really somewhat of an enigma. Jennifer Fitzgerald was allowed by Bushala to walk on virtually unchallenged in 2012 as a result of Tony Bushala’s agreeing to let Mr. Nelson’s wishes to do so be honored. Fitzgerald was actually the insurance money in the entire transaction that took place in the recall. An ardent political opportunist, she could be relied upon for a yes vote on every development project imaginable. As it originally stood, Bushala really had four out of the five votes locked up, or so he thought.

    While all this political theater was playing out, the ducks were being lined up for the huge payday jackpot. The City of Fullerton, in the vacuum of the redevelopment agency’s dismantling, was in the midst of a massive undertaking in hopes of revamping the entire city turning it into a burgeoning metropolis. The DCCSP was the city’s ambitious forward thinking plan that would transform this once quite bedroom community into a bustling high rise transit oriented oasis in the heart of Orange County with ten story lining the streets.

    After the 2012 elections, Bushala pulled the plug on his FFFF website and as expected, would never mention the DCCSP. The DCCSP went before the planning commission that his hired hands appointed and it was passed. Bushala sat quietly waiting in the wings for the most important vote in Fullerton City Council History. 3 years after he had spent upwards of $500,000 and 2 years after the flames of the Kelly Thomas event were doused by the waters of time, the DCCSP vote would finally be before the council. The problem was the council at that time did not have the four votes owned by Bushala as Kiger was defeated 2 years earlier. Jan Flory took Travis out in a major upset narrowly defeating him by a handful of votes. That night, in August of 2014, at a council meeting in the library room with no live video coverage, the 100 million dollar vote would be before 5 council members only to be tabled. The Bushala brothers plans were immediately thwarted and their properties remain in their original condition and subject to the same zoning restriction that were placed on them before the half a million dollar expenditure to liberate them had begun.

    Bushala’s so called limited government, libertarian, fiscal conservative types who have run for office like Chris Norby, Chris Thompson, Greg Sebourn, Travis Kiger, and Bruce Whitaker have all been on Tony’s payroll for the most part. They understand the power structure, what they need to say and not say and they will perform when the time comes for them to perform. This is not limited to slandering and threatening anyone who gets in the way. 

    The only person that I know that would never play ball with this crowd was Barry Levinson. When Barry realized that Tony was playing him, Barry must have realized that there was never any room on that team for Barry. Barry may not have realize Tony’s agenda at that time, but because Barry is financially independent and not beholden to anyone’s ideology, he freely speaks his mind and has done a tremendous service to the residents of Fullerton by staying unbiased, objective and most importantly, involved. As a result, this has thwarted some of the most dastardly of development plans namely the DCCSP. Barry was the ONLY person to fully expose this undemocratic power grab and call it what it was. He also exposed how this would be ripe for graft and bribery if passed. He also continued to fight the cities attempts to bring this item back in different shapes and forms defeating it every time.

    Fast forward to four years later and the newbies who recently ran for office either do not understand the power structure that is in place and the games that are being played or simply choose to look the other way. They are just weak-minded people with very limited financial resources and are willing to cozy up to the power structure as they hope to latch on to Tony’s pocketbook and maintain their connections. Their behavior speaks for itself. Listen to their rhetoric, watch their willful ignorance of the issues and of course their refusal to propose, or demand solutions. They do not even realize they don’t have a full grasp on the problems that we face so how in the world could they ever propose solutions? Fortunately those people will never get elected so we don’t have to worry about them. Tony Bushala has effectively co-opted, compromised and controlled the loyal opposition in town.

    He has done well in figuring out how to throw them a bone so he can control them to work for his agenda. These people people don’t want to believe what his agenda is because to accept what his agenda is and to understand what his agenda is means that they may not get a couple thousand dollars in campaign contributions if they decide to run for office. The whole agenda is for Tony Bushala to build high-rise apartments all over his slums. That’s what he’s all about because he’s a developer. He plays all these political games and engages in political gamesmanship. It is and always has been Tony’s political chess game, and most of you have been and still are his pawns. 

    I am grateful for the platform that Mr. Imbriano has provided to put this information out for the people to read and to Mr. Levinson for his steadfast and uncompromising commitment to the good people of Fullerton. “


    Barry Levinson
  1. Lee thank you for your comments above. All I can say is that you my friend have been paying very close attention to the political games being played in Fullerton for decades.

    With regard to the District voting that will start in 2018, I would like to clarify what transpired at Fullerton City Council earlier this year. The city was dealing with an agenda item to determine the sequence of district voting starting in 2018. The concept of the district elections as mandated by the courts was to have local council members representing each of the districts (in our case 5 districts) within Fullerton.  Mayor Whitaker and the rest of the council got their map approved 5 to 0.  This was not one of the many maps worked on by citizen groups for many months as part of the process but rather a late entry by Slide Bar owner Jeremy Popoff, a contributor to past Whitaker campaigns.  I like to call this map the downtown developers map because it basically disenfranchised all the voters living in and around downtown by splitting that area into all the other five districts grossly diluting their voice through the ballot box.  The first vote by the council approved a schedule that would result in having one representative for each of the five districts starting in 2018.  This schedule to have elections in District’s 2 and 5 in 2018 was approved with Whitaker’s yes vote along with Chaffee and Silva.   A motion by Fitzgerald seconded by Sebourn to have District 3 instead of District 2 in the 2018 election failed 3 to 2.

    The problem for Bruce Whitaker was that Greg Sebourn’s four year term would run out in 2018 and his Third District would not vote again until 2020, while still being represented by Jesus Silva. So ignoring all democratic principles, the rationale for going to district voting in the first place and the will of the majority of the people, so-called limited government Bruce Whitaker decided to totally limit, i.e. disenfranchise the Second District from 2018 to 2020 (the one coincidentally both Joe Imbriano and I live in) in order to help keep his buddy Greg Sebourn on the council.

    The problem with this move again was that it was totally undemocratic for it disenfranchised the Second District for 2 years while giving the Third District 2 representatives, Jesus Silva and Greg Sebourn or a challenger.

    Bruce Whitaker after the first vote on the 2018 District voting schedule was completed had a choice. He could let the vote stand (as is the case in 99.999% of agenda votes) as the most democratic and most popular choice to handle the district elections; or he could as Mayor attempt to change the just approved voting schedule for what I believe was the dual purpose to please his campaign benefactor Tony Bushala and allow Greg Sebourn (also financially supported by Tony Bushala) to run for reelection in 2018.  

    What did self-proclaimed statesman and Appointed Mayor Bruce Whitaker do facing this not so tough choice? He chose to throw democracy and the people of the Second District under the bus for the express purpose in my opinion to take care of his fellow council member Greg Sebourn and his campaign benefactor Tony Bushala.

    I believe the knowledge of this latest chicanery by Bruce Whitaker is more than enough to prove that this self-proclaimed statesman, is nothing more than a phony and extremely flawed politician.  

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  1. #1 by Barry Levinson on June 15, 2017 - 11:11 pm

    Well the City of Fullerton finally found a replacement for disgraced former City Manager, Joe Felz. It only took 6 months. His name is Kenneth Domer, formerly Assistant City Manager of Huntington Beach. The city recommends that he start on July 24, 2017 with a five year agreement. (A five-year agreement is a very bad idea.)

    I word of advice for Kenneth Domer assuming he will be appointed as our next City Manager. The simple advice is that he runs the city with only the goal of serving the good people of Fullerton (I know a novel but extremely important idea) and not the interests of special groups, like the employee unions, developers and lobbyists/consultants.

  2. #2 by Anonymous on June 16, 2017 - 10:54 pm

    Tony’s tools-that’s clever. Funny how you guys attack Larry Bennett when he was right about Bushala all along. Tell us Barry, when did you see finally see the light?

  3. #3 by Lee on June 17, 2017 - 10:56 am

    I would like to add another caveat to what I have stated. The Bushala Brothers are also very involved in enterprises such as bars, and of course, they are looking to get into the marijuana dispensaries. If you will remember, one of Bushala’s people, Chris Norby is an ardent supporter of marijuana use and has always made it a point to lobby for its legalization.

    With the the advent of the passage of Prop 64, there can be little doubt dispensaries will indeed be part of the Bushala portfolio. The brothers holdings would be tremendously enhanced by the storefronts turning into dispensaries.

    Bruce Whitaker has always supported marijuana legislation as well. Greg Sebourn will follow Bruce and so will Jennifer as they will soon be presented with a redrafted proposed ordinance that will open Fullerton wide for retail sales.

  4. #4 by Barry Levinson on June 17, 2017 - 3:49 pm

    I base my opinions based on the facts, people’s actions or inactions in the context of the goals they purport to have for the city and its people.

    I do not generally believe in coincidences as they are rare.

    Political players do their scheming and disingenuous political speak and therefore it sometimes takes time to unravel who they really are and what is their ultimate goals. I got involved in local issues and city politics in 2010. Since that date I have paid close attention to all the major players and even some of the minor ones. There are some politicians who are relatively easy to figure out behind their facades and their smoke streams.

    Tony Bushala and Bruce Whitaker took longer for me to totally uncover or unmask their true identities than many of the other local politicians and power players. But what Tony did was provide phony/false opposition candidates to the then establishment beholden to him for the express purpose of getting His people elected and in positions of power. This was not done for the good of the people even though that is what he and his FFFF website would like you to believe. Tony’s motives in my opinion are extremely self-serving. It was to get the DCCSP passed and now marijuana dispensaries instituted in Fullerton in order to make tons of money from his downtown real estate holdings. One could easily call Tony Bushala the king of crony, phony capitalism. As I have always said about Fullerton politics, all you have to do is to follow the money!

  5. #5 by Anonymous on June 20, 2017 - 11:01 pm

    Looks like Tony called off his people because they didn’t show up tonight. I saw you and Barry and thank you for speaking tonight. You guys are spot on about Tony. It has always been about development his way and zoning his way. Kang was Agran’s boy and Newman is Tonys

  6. #6 by Barry Levinson on November 1, 2017 - 11:40 am

    Now that the redistricting of Fullerton has come up again at city hall, we have Mayor Whitaker blatantly lying to the public about the impact of having downtown residents being broken into the five districts.

    Mayor Whitaker had the audacity to blatantly lie to the good people of Fullerton when he said that he believed (wink, wink, nod, nod) that having downtown residents being split into all five districts as a very minor proportion of each district gives them more power. When I heard this, the seat in front of me was the only thing stopping me from falling to the floor in a combination of laughter and disgust. Make no mistake Fullertonians Mayor Bruce Whitaker is a total sell out. He is as phony as a three dollar bill and probably could be bought for about the same amount of money. He deserves your scorn and not your support.

  7. #7 by Anonymous on November 16, 2017 - 3:28 pm

    I know for a fact that Joe Imbriano was one of the regular posters on the FFFF blog several years back. I am glad that he is no longer entangled with that dirty crowd. I applaud him for starting this website and for allowing people to speak the truth. The Bushala brothers have always had their eyes on huge projects. It is just what they do, They are real estate developers. Their ultimate goal was to drive the city into bankruptcy and run it like their own company. Fortunately it never happened.

    For years 420 friendly Chris Norby and Bruce Whitaker pushed for marijuana legalization. Bushala and his brother spent hundreds of thousands of dollars trying to corner the market on all sorts of municipal planning processes. Now it is all over for the Bushala brothers and I do mean all over. There will be no huge apartment buildings on his slumlord properties and best of all, no dispensaries. This amounts to one huge bad trip for Tony.

  8. #8 by Anonymous on January 3, 2018 - 3:02 pm

    Josh Newman, gave us no less than 15 bills that provide an end run around local control over development. I think the idiots like Kiger that still have their wagons hitched to Bushala have done Fullerton much harm. Bushala is and always has been about development. He, after all is a real estate developer.

  9. #9 by Anonymous on January 4, 2018 - 11:43 am

    Bushala has decided to back another horse and that would be Josh Newman. I also think he still has Whitaker tied to his apron strings. Whitaker may not realize that Bushala has really moved on from him because he did not deliver on the DCCSP and could not stop Levinson from telling the awful truth about city hall. Bushala blames Whitaker for appointing Levinson to the Park and Recreation Committee in the first place. Bushala a self-proclaimed libertarian backing a huge government far left liberal. What does that tell you about the sincerity of Tony Bushala? It tells me that he is one big self-serving large development phony.

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