A year ago, Fresno County Supervisor Henry R. Perea was to be part of the groundbreaking for the new First 5 Fresno County building currently under construction in downtown Fresno.
Perea then backed out. Kendra Rogers, who at the time was First 5’s executive director, said the reason was because she had invited Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin to both attend and speak at the event.
On Tuesday, a similar set of circumstances didn’t stop Perea.
Both Swearengin and Perea were in attendance at the groundbreaking for the state’s high-speed rail project in downtown Fresno.
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Swearengin offered opening remarks for the event, which featured Gov. Jerry Brown and others. Perea didn’t talk, but was recognized for his work on behalf of the project.
Later, both Swearengin and Perea were part of the initial group including Brown that signed a ceremonial piece of rail that was at the groundbreaking, and Perea later posted photos from the event on his Facebook page.
A year ago it was a different story.
Rogers last year provided The Bee with text messages from Perea from the time when news broke that Swearengin would attend the groundbreaking. “Mayor Swearengin..... r u kidding me?????” Perea texted.
Later texts from Perea’s assistant ending with one saying to take Perea “off the speaking list and he doesn’t need to be quoted on the press release.”