Ron Cohen is presently the driving force behind the Yucca Valley Recall and big wig over at the Morongo Basin Democrat war room.
I was made privy to this letter from one of our esteemed friends. I would like to share the letter with you all.
M. Ronald Cohen
**** Great House Ln
Yucca Valley, CA 92284
June 8, 2013
Town Council (Mayor Abel, Mayor Pro Tem Lombardo, Council Member Huntington, Council Member Leone, and Council Member Rowe)
Town of Yucca Valley
57090 Twentynine Palms Highway
Yucca Valley, CA 92284
SUBJ: Termination of Town Manager – Mark Nuaimi
Based on the following facts, I request the dismissal of Mark Nuaimi, Town Manager of Yucca Valley. Mr. Nuaimi has engaged in willful misconduct consistent with Section 2.08.100 of the Town of Yucca Valley Municipal Code (YVMC), which states in relevant part:
Willful misconduct includes conduct directly related to conduct in office and directly related to the duties of the office. It includes the refusal to follow the lawful directions of the Town Council. It also includes conduct not related directly to the performance of official duties of the office when such conduct has a direct and harmful effect on the welfare of the Town. Evidence of such direct and harmful effect shall include, but shall not be limited to, conviction of a felony.
Pursuant to Section 2.08.100, the following provides factual bases for dismissal with cause:
- The Town Manager unilaterally established a vacation and/or sick leave sell back policy, Administrative Policy No. 7.2.9 dated August 15, 2011, in direct violation of Section 2.08.050 of the YVMC. The ultra vires policy permits staff to sell back vacation or sick leave twice a year. This, in effect, raises staff compensation without Town Council approval, in violation of the Town of Yucca Valley Municipal Code. Pursuant to Section 2.08.060, “[t]he Town Council shall instruct the Town Manager in matters of policy.” Yet, no such direction by Council exists.
- Contrary to local law, the Town Manager directed that Town offices be closed every Friday, as well as from noon to 1:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday. According to Section 2.55.010, “the public offices of the Town shall be closed on Saturdays and Sundays, and on those holidays set forth by resolution of the Town Council.” The Town Manager must, consistent with this section, “direct that all or a portion of the public offices of the Town shall remain open for business, on a full or reduced staff basis, on any of the days or holidays prescribed by the Town Council, when the Town Manager determines it to be necessary in the public interest to do so.” (Section 2.55.010.) Closing Town offices is not considered a reduced staff basis. There is no evidence of such Council direction.
- The Town Manager attends High Desert Water District (HDWD) meetings as an authorized representative of the Town of Yucca Valley. However, pursuant to Section 2.08.080, the Town Manager, is authorized to attend as an official Town representative only those meetings of commissions, boards and committees created by the Town Council. The HDWD is NOT created by the Town Council. HDWD only represents persons serviced by the HDWD, which in some cases is less than the total citizenry of the Town of Yucca Valley and, in other instances, represents more than Yucca Valley residents. Yucca Mesa water customers, located in the County of San Bernardino but not within Yucca Valley town boundaries, are such an example. There is simply no legal authority enabling the Town Manager to so act as an official Town representative during HDWD meetings. (See attached email from Mark Nuaimi to HDWD.)
- During a recent meeting with Concerned Citizens, the Town Manager candidly disclosed his practice of using “car allowances” as a means of circumventing the Town Council to pad staff salaries. In so doing, the Town Manager usurped Town Council policy and salary resolutions, in violation of Section 2.08.050. Both council members Huntington and Leone were present.
- Although the Town Manager claims he takes all required direction from the Town Council, such is not the case. Based on the above, the Town Manager’s actions are inconsistent with Section 2.08.060 of the YVMC. Accordingly, “[t]he Town Manager shall take his orders and instructions from the Town Council only when sitting in a duly convened meeting of the Town Council….” Further evidence of said violations repeatedly occurred during recent 2013-2014 budget sessions.
- The Town Manager continues to promise and pledge that any future revenue derived from increased Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) will be used solely to assist local hotel and motel businesses with future sewer service connections without Town Council approval. This is another example of ultra vires policy and fiscal mismanagement diverting needed Town revenues without Town Council approval; which is still more evidence of Section 2.08.060 violations.
Respectfully submitted for the betterment of Yucca Valley. Sincerely,
M. Ronald Cohen
Being a good and loyal Republican it troubles me so to have to give credit where credit is due, but Mr. Cohen’s keen insight and observations must have gave the Council a start, and I would suggest that his letter gave each member of the Council reason to think.
I salute Mr. Cohen and his group.
Current average ratings.