Mayor to close Vault so he can make rally decisions

The Vault

Hollister Mayor Ignacio Velazquez has had an on-again, off-again status when it comes to making official decisions on the biker rally. On Monday, he announced he is on again and said he will avoid making money on the event so he can take part in the city’s decision making.
Even though Velazquez has been continually active behind the scenes with event planning since the event’s revival in 2013, he has gone back and forth on his own eligibility to vote regarding rally matters.
At Monday’s council meeting, he announced he will take part in council decisions, in light of officials struggling with rally finances and whether to continue on with the twice-canceled event.
“Last year, I recused myself from the conversations,” Velazquez told council members, mentioning how he owns The Vault business at Fifth and San Benito streets. “I do profit if the rally is going on.”
He went on: “This year, I will be voting on it so I won’t be part of the businesses that are open to making money from the rally.”
He noted how he has received an opinion from the attorney general saying if he made $20,000 or more off the business, he would maintain a conflict with decision making.
“So I cannot be open as a bar/restaurant because I would be in violation rather quickly,” he said.
He said he’s making a personal sacrifice to keep the rally going.
“I’m not asking for anyone’s pity or anything else,” he said. “It’s all fine with me.”

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