California Taxpayers Action Network

Promoting and Protecting the Rights of California’s Residents and Taxpayers

CalTAN Leadership

California Taxpayers Action Network (CalTAN) is a statewide non-profit, non-partisan, all-volunteer organization that promotes fiscal responsibility in state and local government.

  • We promote policies that protect residents and taxpayers from fraud, favoritism, and corruption in government spending.
  • We expect government to deliver optimal value for every tax dollar and make decisions that are in the long-term public interest.
  • We support full compliance with competitive bidding practices to ensure good use of taxpayer dollars and prevent waste.
  • We serve as citizen watchdogs and monitor local government to ensure transparency, efficiency and accountability.
  • We inform public officials and taxpayers about best practices for public projects.
  • We challenge public officials to put taxpayers first and do business in a way that is responsive, ethical and accountable.

On occasion CalTAN participates in litigation in the Superior and Appellate Courts of California to clarify various public contracting and taxpayer standing issues.  In 2016 CalTAN obtained a favorable published opinion in McGee v. Balfour Beatty Construction, LLC (2016) 247 Cal.App.4th 235 that held taxpayers have standing to bring a cause of action against school construction contractors alleged to have conflicts of interest.  California prohibits public officials, employees and their consultants from being personally financially interested in contracts they formed in their official capacities.

We also support taxpayer interests by filing arguments against various state and local bond and tax measures.  We also serve as a resource to community groups that need help researching and preparing arguments against local ballot measures.

CaTAN's Directors and Officers

Director/President M. Kevin O’Neill

Mr. O’Neill has been an active participant and advocate in multiple local government forums for over 25 years and has run his own small construction company for over 35 years working on both public and private funded projects. This experience enables Mr. O’Neill to identify waste and inefficiency in public expenditures and suggest policies and practices to protect taxpayers. He lives in Chula Vista and has served on the Sweetwater Union High School Citizen’s Bond Oversight Committee for 4 years.

Director/Chief Financial Officer G. Rick Marshall

G. Rick Marshall is a recognized taxpayer advocate and strong supporter of Proposition 13.  Active for decades in local, county and state public policy, he currently serves on the City of Torrance Planning Commission and is a former Torrance Water Commissioner. Mr. Marshall was runner-up for the 2014 State Board of Equalization, 3rd District seat.  Rick holds the endorsement of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association for both that office and a seat on the Torrance Unified School District Citizens Bond Oversight Committee. Mr. Marshall received a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Sterling College. He currently works as a software developer/report writer in the information technology department at a major Southern California academic medical center.

Director Wendy M. Lack

Ms. Lack retired from city government human resources management after more than 25 years of service in the East Bay region. She currently runs a small business and is an active community volunteer. Ms. Lack holds a Bachelor of Science in Public Affairs from the University of Southern California and a Master in Business Administration from Golden Gate University in San Francisco. She is an active blogger, writes on issues of interest to taxpayers and has helped author numerous ballot arguments. Her articles have been published in American Thinker, Fox and Hounds Daily and other blogs focused on local politics and government.

Director Michael A. Cornelius, P.E.

Mr. Cornelius is a Registered Professional Civil Engineer who began work in the heavy civil construction industry over 40 years ago advancing from a laborer up through various field and management positions. During that time he obtained a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and a Masters in Business Administration with an emphasis in finance. As a long time taxpayer advocate Mr. Cornelius was the taxpayer plaintiff in Cornelius v. Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority (1997) 49 Cal. App. 4th 1761 to challenge preferential contracting policies and practices. He is currently admitted by California’s Department of Transportation and other states’ transportation departments to serve as an administrative adjudicator on their contract dispute review boards.

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