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29 Palms: Careless oversight or stealth abuse of power?

By   /   January 13, 2012  /   2 Comments

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“The bucks stops at the City Manager’s desk.”

TWENTYNINE PALMS, CA  – The City breached its pledge to the community to provide public access to videos of Council Meetings. A friendly call earlier this week to the City Clerk’s Office resulted in being informed that the video would be up within 48 hours.

That expired Thursday. Today is Friday. The City is  dark. Dark until Tuesday, January 17.

Some will believe there is a conspiracy of some sort or a stealth abuse of power somewhere up the line on the part of a scheming city official. Others may believe it is just a careless oversight.

It doesn’t matter because the outcome as a whole directly and negatively impacts the entire community having “delayed access” to the public video.

What matters is the community is actually concerned about its millions of dollars of Bond debt and how the pie is sliced and distributed. Free speech take a severe  blow in the groins because people are being delayed from public access to one of the most important issues facing this community.

The bucks stops at the City Manager’s desk. A message was left on Richard Warne’s cell phone (previously provided by Mr. Wayne).  This contributor identified himself and left a message. The call was not returned.

Hard to make a good call on why this video is being inexplicably blocked from the Video  Site — even though the contents of the video is one of the most costly issues facing the property owners’ and one of the important issues before the public.

Careless oversight or stealth abuse of power?

City Council likely had a good intentions when they voted to put up videos of City Council meetings on their Video Site within 48 hours after meetings.  How many Councilmen will follow up on this? Many in the community believe the so-called “Playhouse Five” have isolated themselves akin to government elitists who are protected by their advisers?

As I recall, one prior 29 City Councilman very recently (officially) broke the news to the City Manager (and his two attorneys at his side advising him) that the city has an image problem.

This intentionally or negligent delay is going to be seen by many as another gap in public trust or a vacancy in public relations.

City of Twentynine Palms Video Site

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About the author

Branson Hunter

(This story was posted by Cactus Thorn contributor Branson Hunter)

"The ends do not justify the means." If you use illegal mean to accomplish a legal and even desirable result, the good result does not make the bad means you used justifiable.


  1. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    Problem is Branson… like Steve said they had no Plan B…. I WATCHED THE CD. They sat there like they had Egg on their faces. Who would want to have the whole town see what a bunch of Putzes most of them turned out to be.

    You got to remember this is a crushing blow to their egos….except maybe Mayor Cole who I believe does not have a tight grasp on the reality rope. Harris has to be humiliated. They put a solvent city who had Z E R O Debt into what might turn out to be bankruptcy. They bet on the “come” and the shooter rolled snake eyes. It was a STUPID BET. We told them so… almost as an act of childhood defiance they put the whole town on the Come line and pissed it all in one roll of the dice.

    They should be forced to pay it out of their own assets. All of them should be ashamed of their actions and at least apologize to the citizens of this town.

    The big problem now is the EOPS or what it now has turned into as the ROPS. We have a problem Sacramento, according to the EOPS wages and benefits for Successor Agency was written in stone as $195,000. During the meeting it was decided on a whim and almost without fanfare that the employee budget would be $250,000. That my friends is a $60,000 discrepancy in what they budgeted and now what the city thinks it is entitled to. That is in some camps called fraud.

    I would like to make sure that the Oversight Board is made aware of discrepancies like this and demand that the city pay it back and base their budget on the ROPS.

  2. Mark Clemons Mark Clemons says:

    a libertarian might say the voters got what they deserved. seems the democrats and republicans don’t want to hold themselves responsible for their choice of council. Time to look in the mirror and ask did I vote for these greedy bastards? Why did I vote for these bastards? was there an alternative candidate that was on target saying unpopular truths? won’t people learn now they are going to support the likes of cook the crook. lol

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