Assemblyman Bill Brough (R-Dana Point), who was accused of inappropriately touching and offering individuals political favors in exchange for sex, was stripped of his duties after a workplace investigation substantiated the claims made against him.
The probe by the Legislature's Workplace Conduct Unit that started last year submitted its report. The Assembly Rules Committee made an announcement on Wednesday, May 27 that the panel had substantiated the claims made against Brough.
Republican Responds to Findings
Brough said in a statement that the probe was politically motivated and that he disregarded the findings. He said the investigation was not fair, citing that factual elements were missing. Brough said he will consider dealing with it legally. He denied any kind of harassment and apologized to his family and friends for putting them through this.
A report was filed in June 2019 alleging that Brough had made sexual advances by making promises in exchange for sex. A complaint was made by Orange County Supervisor Lisa Bartlett against Brough in 2011. She said there were many people with similar experiences and complaints.
Lisa accused Brough of inappropriate behavior. Following her complaint, a probe was launched in September last year, following which Brough's name was removed from a re-election list in the March 3 primary.
Harassment and Discrimination Training
Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Lakewood has asked Brough to take harassment and discrimination training, to which the latter has agreed. Rendon also wrote to individuals who had filed complaints against Brough that their claims were sustained. With immediate effect Brough would no longer serve on his committee assignments, Rendon explained in his letter.
Brough was working as the vice chairman on the Business and Professions and Revenue and Taxation Committees. He was also a member of a special budget subcommittee that dealt with overseeing California's response to the coronavirus situation.
Assembly Republican leader Marie Waldron said she was working with the Speaker on the next steps. Following similar accusations, Democratic state senator Tony Mendoza resigned in 2018. Democrats from Los Angeles, Raul Bocanegra and Matt Dababneh also quit their positions in the wake of sexual harassment allegations against them in 2017.