Beware of Deborah Dukes

Beware of School Board incumbent Deborah Dukes


10/24/11 Banning School Board elections will be coming up soon. Former Mayor and City Council member Bob Botts has endorsed incumbent Deborah Dukes (view). Whenever Botts, – or Barbara Hanna and Don Robinson for that

School Board candidate Deborah Dukes

matter – endorse anyone or anything, beware : there usually is an agenda. It was Botts’ endorsement that has caused us to take a closer look at the record of  Banning School Board candidate Deborah Dukes.



Dukes' Fellow School Board member, Amy Herr, was able to profit over $100,000 with the help of Dukes' vote on the School Board

Public record shows that Dukes is responsible for giving the Boys and Girls Club over $ 1 million dollars in taxpayer funds. These funds were used in part to enable her fellow School Board member, Amy Herr, ( who decided not to run for re-election ) to obtain a fat annual salary of $ 63,000 per year from the Club (story).

The vote took place on  October 22, 2009 . The discussion of the Board took just 27 seconds ! Undoubtedly, such a short proceeding for such a large amount of money suggests that there was a hidden agenda. Before you know it,  in 27 seconds over one million dollars of taxpayer funds were funneled into a private entity !


In the following video Dukes can be heard saying that it was a “great idea” to give away the money to the Club.


Neither Dukes – nor anyone else on the Board –  disclosed to the public that part of the money flowed right into the pockets of fellow School Board member, Amy Herr. ( more on this story ).



If one wants to figure out who NOT to vote for in a Banning election, all one needs to do is check if the candidate has any ties to Banning’s premier ‘good old boys’  organization, the “Banning Cultural Alliance”.

As it turns out, Deborah Dukes is the “second-in-command” of this unaccountable organization. The “Banning Cultural Alliance” has ripped off the Banning taxpayer for unconscionable amounts of money (more). The organization is best compared to a malignant cancer that has befallen the City of Banning.

In 2010, the Riverside County Grand Jury  found that the Cultural Alliance had

Dukes disregards Grand Jury findings

received  $ 162,000 from the City of Banning for services they never performed (view report) . The Grand Jury further concluded that the City should refrain from doing business with the Banning Cultural Alliance and that the Alliance ought to pay back the $ 162,000 + interest that they had unduly received. But none of these recommendations were ever followed.

Under the leadership of its Vice President, Deborah Dukes, the “Banning Cultural Alliance” has failed to repay even one dollar of the 162,000 the Grand Jury says they owe to the taxpayer. Instead, Dukes has asked the City for even more money – and promptly got it from Botts, Hanna and Robinson. Botts’ endorsement of Dukes goes to show that Banning’s good-old-boys-network is alive and well.



Last but not least, under Dukes’ leadership the Banning School District was the only School District in Riverside County to receive a “Negative Certification” from the State of California. . This means – in plain English – that the District’s finances have been mismanaged to a point where they are a total mess.  For more on this story see PE article of  4/3/11



What does all of the above tell us about Deborah Dukes ?

We must stay vigilant not to elect people who helped rip off the taxpayer, in the case of Deborah Dukes not once, but twice. Accountability is key and Deborah Dukes has shown to have none. Therefore :   Beware of Deborah Dukes !


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