City Beat

News, insight and discussion on Sacramento and its neighborhoods

May 11, 2012
Union boss bets candidate $1,000 he can't win Sacramento council race

Labor unions apparently aren't too fond of Mitch Netto.

Matt Kelly, head of the Sacramento-Sierra Building and Construction Trades Council, sent an email to Netto on Wednesday offering to bet him $1,000 that he can't beat incumbent Councilman Kevin McCarty in the race for City Council District 6. McCarty is closely aligned to the city's trade unions.

The Netto campaign had invited Kelly and others to a fund-raiser hosted by steel company executive Steve Ayers and former Councilman Robbie Waters. In his response, Kelly made it pretty clear what he thinks of Netto. His unedited email read:

"I will bet you $1,000 you won't beat Kevin McCarty. You are simply a pawn for the anti-union, anti-worker, fat cat business interests that want to hijack city hall to make it their own and rape the city for all it's worth with subsidies for their development projects and stealing public education from the tax payers....speaking of taxes, I hear you are a tax scofflaw. So I must ask, do you realize you're being used or is it possible you simply don't care?....which is it? Regardless, care to take me up on the wager?"

Kelly's "tax scofflaw" reference relates to federal and state tax liens that have been filed against Netto. Those liens total about $75,000. Netto said the liens are a result of an identity theft issue, but he has not formally challenged the accusations in court.

Kelly stood by his comments in a phone call with me, saying "It's a shame (Netto) is letting himself be used."

Netto, an information technology consultant, is seeking to unseat McCarty from the district covering Elmhurst, Tahoe Park and other neighborhoods on the city's southeast side. He has the support of the police union, development groups and some high-profile business leaders.

About Comments

Reader comments on are the opinions of the writer, not The Sacramento Bee. If you see an objectionable comment, click the "report abuse" button below it. We will delete comments containing inappropriate links, obscenities, hate speech, and personal attacks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. See more about comments here.

What You Should Know About Comments on is happy to provide a forum for reader interaction, discussion, feedback and reaction to our stories. However, we reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments or ban users who can't play nice. (See our full terms of service here.)

Here are some rules of the road:

• Keep your comments civil. Don't insult one another or the subjects of our articles. If you think a comment violates our guidelines click the "report abuse" button to notify the moderators. Responding to the comment will only encourage bad behavior.

• Don't use profanities, vulgarities or hate speech. This is a general interest news site. Sometimes, there are children present. Don't say anything in a way you wouldn't want your own child to hear.

• Do not attack other users; focus your comments on issues, not individuals.

• Stay on topic. Only post comments relevant to the article at hand. If you want to discuss an issue with a specific user, click on his profile name and send him a direct message.

• Do not copy and paste outside material into the comment box.

• Don't repeat the same comment over and over. We heard you the first time.

• Do not use the commenting system for advertising. That's spam and it isn't allowed.

• Don't use all capital letters. That's akin to yelling and not appreciated by the audience.

You should also know that The Sacramento Bee does not screen comments before they are posted. You are more likely to see inappropriate comments before our staff does, so we ask that you click the "report abuse" button to submit those comments for moderator review. You also may notify us via email at Note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us the profile name of the user who made the comment. Remember, comment moderation is subjective. You may find some material objectionable that we won't and vice versa.

If you submit a comment, the user name of your account will appear along with it. Users cannot remove their own comments once they have submitted them, but you may ask our staff to retract one of your comments by sending an email to Again, make sure you note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us your profile name.

hide comments

On October 14, The Sacramento Bee will temporarily remove commenting from While we design the upgrade, we encourage you to tell us what you like and don't like about commenting on and other websites. We've heard from hundreds of you already and we're listening. Please continue to add your thoughts and questions here. We also encourage you to write Letters to the Editor on this and other topics.

About City Beat

Ryan Lillis has covered the city of Sacramento, its 108 neighborhoods and its politicians since 2008. Prior to that, he covered crime at The Bee. A native of upstate New York, Lillis has a journalism degree from the University of California, Berkeley.

Contact reporter Ryan Lillis at


Does the Kings' poor performance of late impact the arena work?

Ryan Lillis on Twitter

Follow "Ryan_Lillis" on Twitter

October 2013

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
    1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31    

Sacramento City Resources

City Web Sites

How to contact city officials