Should a Petaluma city councilmember who owns a house in another county, which he claims is his primary place of residence on tax records, be allowed to weigh in on Petaluma issues?
According to the Bohemian blog, council member Chris Albertson owns a house in Santa Barbara, where he took a homeowner's property tax exemption in 2011. But he is registered to vote in Petaluma, where he retired as Fire Chief in 2008 and ran for public office in 2010.
The California Code of Regulations defines "domicile" as the place where an individual has his or her true, fixed, permanent home and principal establishment.
So is it OK for Albertson to take a tax deduction for his “principal place of residence” in Santa Barbara while holding elective office in Petaluma? Can he have one property for tax purposes, and another for voting?
Albertson served with the Santa Barbara Fire Department for 28 years and still has a home there. He came to Petaluma in 2001 when he was hired as chief of the Petaluma Fire Department.
Albertson did not return Petaluma Patch’s calls for comment, but told the Bohemian that he and his wife have a long distance relationship…“she lives in Santa Barbara, and I live in Petaluma, and it’s none of your business.”
To read more, click here.