Mayor Jerry Dyer responds to One Fresno Foundation allegations

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Mayor Jerry Dyer pulled no punches as he fought back against an anonymous allegation reported to the Fair Political Practices Commission, the state's political finance watchdog.

The complaint alleges Dyer has used the One Fresno Foundation, which he controls, to obtain behest campaign contributions from a local developer beyond the legal limit of $4,800 without disclosing as required by FPPC.

"We will not be distracted by the political gamesmanship of people in this community that do not have the guts to file a complaint put their name behind it, but to do it anonymously," Dyer said.

The One Fresno Foundation is a non-profit designed to further Dyer's vision of investing in the underserved youth in the Central Valley.

Dyer also took this opportunity to share the success of the organization - mentioning how they sent kids to a summer camp last year or the 9,000 youth and their families to the Fresno Chaffee Zoo for free.

"I want to make it clear that there is absolutely no person or any type of financial benefit to me as a result of this foundation," he said. "The ones who benefit from the One Fresno Foundation are the disadvantaged kids in our community."

The FPPC released a letter to Dyer on Tuesday.

Wednesday, Dyer came armed with it, saying in part that the enforcement division will not pursue this matter further.
The mayor also said all of his donations are online and easy for anyone to access.

The mayor says 100 percent of the funds is passed to the youth.

Finally, the mayor said the first financial contribution to the foundation was $25,000 of his personal money.

"Was I reaping some type of a financial benefit as a result of this, the answer's no," he said. "I gave my own time, own money, just as the folks behind me did. We care about our youth. To have our integrity called into question is absolutely incredible. Unbelievable. But to be expected."

One of the foundations' board members, Monica Diaz says when she heard about the allegations two days ago, she was very disappointed.

"It was kind of heartbreaking to see something so beautiful that we actually have made a difference, for people to come out and attack," she said. "If you have a political disagreement with someone, a dislike, please don't take it out because the whole community suffers."

Action News reached out to the FPPC for more information but was told the commission cannot comment further at this time.

Meanwhile, the mayor says he's working to grow the One Fresno Foundation in 2022 and hopes donations won't be impacted by the accusations.

Moving forward, he says they will be launching a volunteer mentorship program later this year for kids and teens in our community.
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