As a former local elected official and planning commissioner, I look at the definition of the office to include as its first priority, “service to the public.” Under no circumstances is it appropriate for elected officials or government employees to degrade or demean taxpayers or to withhold information relative to how public funds are being spent.
Greetings from Claremont! Perhaps you have already heard about our attempt to seize the assets of our local water system by filing an eminent domain lawsuit. As the town of Apple Valley is following in our footsteps, so to speak, I thought you might be interested in finding out how this endeavor turned out for us.
You may remember that at the Apple Valley Town Council meeting on December 13, 2016, the council voting unanimously to allow cargo shipping containers in the area known as The Village (AKA Ordinance No. 490). As luck would have it, Mayor Scott Nassif and Councilman Larry Cusack each have businesses in this area.
By now everyone must have heard that Apple Valley Assistant Town Manager for Finance Marc Puckett was involved in what is being investigated for a felonious hit-and-run that occurred on July 20 (“Vehicle belonging to AV town manager involved in hit-and-run,” Daily Press, August 7, 2017). Briefly, a woman claims that Mr. Puckett rear-ended her on the I-15 at 11:30 p.m. Mr. Puckett claims she is lying, even though he has acknowledged abandoning his car that night off the side of the freeway in a flood control ditch, in the location where the woman claims to have been hit, and Mr. Puckett’s car appears to have been totaled. As if that’s not enough, Mr. Puckett’s account of what happened that night is incomplete at best, and what he has said about events on that night makes no sense.
In just a couple of sentences, Frank Robinson managed to sum up just how bad things became in Apple Valley with him as Town Manager (“Former Apple Valley Town Manager Frank Robinson looks to the future,” Daily Press, July 29, 2017).
In 1988 when the Town of Apple Valley incorporated, the population was 41,387 and there were six policemen. By 2013, the population had increased 67% to 69,135, but the police department had increased 750% to 51.
It remains absolutely mind-boggling to me that Town Officials and their “peeps” continue to barrage the public with fake news in order to demonize the Water Company. They speak with impunity as if they truly know what is going on. The most recent fake news is Pat Orr’s column in the Apple Valley Review of July 25, 2017.
A critical review of the so-called flat budget, based on prior revelations from the Town of Apple Valley, requires a little interpretation. When they issue a report that bad, you have to wonder … it must be even worse than they are willing to let the public know. The Town Council is not known for its transparency!
A recent letter writer’s comment that it must be easier for the Town of Apple Valley to pay its employees out of our pockets must be true because all the employees just got a raise. The Town Manager will receive an increase of about $13,000 as of July 1.