Opinion: Strong ethics and just salary needed for Soboba Band
"Soboba is partly responsible for Bobby Salgado’s demise.

On Oct. 5, Salgado pleaded guilty to accepting $875,000 in bribes and personal income tax evasion. To prevent corruption at the top, first understand human nature then adjust tribal culture.

Like many tribes in Southern California, Soboba has never compensated its tribal council members. Members insist that everyone should share and share alike

Even though Salgado knew better, he most likely couldn’t escape his emotional fate. “Who could blame him for taking the money when he wasn’t paid (to be chairman)?” said a tribal leader.

If Soboba members expect their council to work solely for the benefit of the tribe, they have to pay the council and receive accountability in return. Soboba should establish a fair system of compensation along with strong ethics and vigorous tribal governance. There is no way to conjecture whether or not Salgado would have turned down bribes, if he had received a salary. But, it is likely that the lack of pay deterred other eligible candidates from running for council."

Get the Story:
Cynthia Tam: Soboba’s Salgado committed crimes, but there is blame to go around (The Southwest Riverside News Network 10/13)

Related Stories:
Former Soboba Band chairman Salgado pleads guilty for bribes (10/6)
Robert Salgado, Soboba leader, placed in intensive care (1/18)
Soboba chair pleads not guilty to bribery charges (11/4)
Column: Soboba Band hurt by leader's indictment (10/28)
Soboba Band leader accused of accepting bribes (10/26)