$216,000 in 2016 (Valles)

You may want to sit down for this one.

What if I told you that you could work for the Town of Apple Valley, retire in December of 2015, work zero hours in 2016, and still “earn” $216,000?

For the last couple of months, I have been talking about how the Town of Apple Valley has four overpaid assistant town managers. A couple of weeks ago, Town Manager Doug Robertson — who makes more than $300,000 a year — said that he does not have four assistants and insinuated that I was intentionally misleading you, the reader.

Because I value the trust that you have placed in me, I wanted to revisit this discussion and give you a full accounting of what transpired.

TransparentCalifornia.com is a website that tracks all the salaries, benefits and pensions for government employees in California. The most recent data available for Apple Valley is 2016 and it shows that there were four assistant town managers that year: Marc Puckett ($322,000), Lori Lamson ($270,000), Dennis Cron ($216,000), and Nikki Salas earned $150,000 as an assistant town manager and another $93,000 as the director of human resources.

Robertson correctly argued that the database I was looking at simply counted the number of individuals that held each position and didn’t actually mean they all held that position at the same time. He argued that one or more of these individuals did not spend the full year working as the assistant town manager and therefore I was incorrect.

Well, Puckett, Lamson, and Cron were all assistants in 2015 and 2014. And Salas joined their ranks in 2016 at some point during the year. So, I tracked down when Dennis Cron retired in 2016 to make sure there wasn’t any overlap with Salas.

Gosh darn it — Robertson was correct. The town never had four assistants. But that wasn’t the whole story. You see, not only did Cron not overlap Salas in 2016, he never worked for the Town in 2016. A public information request revealed that he had retired in December of 2015. But get this: Cron still earned $216,000 in 2016.

So, dear reader, I beg your pardon. When I did my initial research I naively assumed that Cron worked the entire year of 2016 to get $216,000 in compensation. And then, I naively thought: Oh, he must have worked half the year or more to get $216,000. But in fact, in turns out that he never worked a day in 2016 and still walked away with all that cash.

No wonder this town is $2.6 million in the hole.

Sanctuary state silence

Supervisor Robert Lovingood and all five members of the Apple Valley Council have refused to speak out against SB 54, the sanctuary state bill. Cities and counties across California have voted to opt out of the state law. In fact, every city in the Victor Valley has either voted against it or began discussing steps to oppose it — except for Apple Valley.

We are now several weeks into this uprising, have a caravan of illegals at the border who flagrantly violate our immigration laws, and yet, our local leaders in Apple Valley are silent. I am particularly discouraged by the silence of Councilwoman Barb Stanton.

As a Tea Party leader, she ran on the platform of “Taxed Enough Already.” But when it comes to protecting the wallets of taxpayers from illegal aliens she refuses to act. However, she did have time to post pictures of Gov. Jerry “Moonbeam” Brown on her Facebook page.

Nice to see she and our other leaders have their priorities in order. Remember their silence. Sanctuary state and city policies allow illegal alien criminals to be released into our communities so that they can once again victimize American citizens. Remember this silence the next time they talk about how they are concerned for public safety when they seek re-election.

Victorville Council travel expenses

The Victorville City Council voted to eliminate its own travel budget last week. For a few months now, I have been investigating the credit card and expense reports submitted by members of the Apple Valley Council and I think that work is what prompted Victorville to address their own issues.

It would be nice if Apple Valley and the rest of the Victor Valley public agencies took a hard look at how they are wasting your tax dollars on unnecessary travel.

If you have suggestions on subjects or comments please contact me at [email protected]

Source: Angela Valles, Apple Valley Review