Three vacancies at the top in Mono County

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As of February 5th, Mono County government will have lost three top management people. The Finance Director recently relocated, the County Administrator will go to a job in Sutter County and Director of Facilities and Risk Management, Rita Sherman, will retire.

Mono Supervisors will interview applicants for Finance Director in February, and they thought they would hire an Interim CAO this week, but learned at their meeting Tuesday that the applicant changed his mind.

County Counsel Marshall Rudolph had prepared an employment agreement for Marlin Koester, retired Ventura County Administrator, which laid out terms of employment as Interim CAO and would have paid him over $81,000 for a four-month term. The Supervisors were set to vote on a resolution approving that agreement. Then, they learned Koester was out. Mr. Koester notified the County that for personal reasons he had decided not to accept the position.

Now, the Board will hold a special closed session meeting next Tuesday to discuss this situation further. With fewer than ten days before Arkens’ departure, board members are pressed to come up with an answer for management leadership. They had only learned two weeks ago that Arkens would take the job as CAO in Sutter County when news reports were published in that area.

In addition to the departures of Arkens and Finance Director Brian Muir, Director of Facilities and Risk Management, Rita Sherman, announced she would retire. CAO Arkens confirmed that Sherman would retire on February 5th.

As for the Interim CAO position, Supervisor Chair Byng Hunt said, “Our strategy is to begin by appointing an as yet undetermined current employee to act very short term as an interim-interim while we contact a pool of retired CAO talent and hire an interim person to help us in the final search for a final appointment.”

Contacted about the lack of an Interim CAO, Supervisor Tim Alpers also said that the Board would look in-house for someone to fill in for a couple of weeks while the Board looks for another Interim CAO. He said the process to hire a new permanent CAO could take two or three months.

Asked if the Board would still assign numerous tasks to the new County Administrator, Supervisor Larry Johnston said, “We’re a small County and the trend is for government people to cover more than one function.” He said the Board would examine its options.

Supervisor Chair Hunt also said that he thinks the results of the whole process “will, in the end, be very beneficial to our County.”

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28 Responses to Three vacancies at the top in Mono County

  1. Filling the positions January 23, 2013 at 5:42 pm #

    Well, this should please the “I hate tax-eaters!” crowd. Maybe the supervisors can bargain with the new prospects and pay the qualified candidates half what the former top managers earned.
    Only trouble is (and I don’t mean to sound cruel – only realistic) who would want to work and live in such a remote place as Bridgeport?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 6

  2. Wayne Deja January 23, 2013 at 6:10 pm #

    ….and here we go again with the Bridgeport bashing by Mammoth people.I,for one,would spend Winter in a tent at a campsite in Bridgeport before I spent the Winter in a Mammoth condo….

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    • Benett Kessler January 23, 2013 at 6:28 pm #

      Please, people, be nice now and then. Bridgeport is remote and some people can’t adjust.
      Others, like many of us here, like it!
      Benett

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

    • Ken Warner January 23, 2013 at 7:13 pm #

      Not everybody in Mammoth bashes Bridgeport.

      I think Bridgeport a great town and I’ve often thought about living there. There are times when Bridgeport is just beautiful because it is so unspoiled.

      …and wait for it… listen for the psycho shadow puppets to start their rants….

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

      • Big AL January 23, 2013 at 8:27 pm #

        Yep you called it Ken .. hehe

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

        • To each his own January 24, 2013 at 7:33 am #

          Some do research and present facts – others are content with personal insults.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

          • Absolutists January 24, 2013 at 12:49 pm #

            There are those on this blog who are clearly absolutists. Not willing to compromise on any subject but would rather rely on confrontation and even a cheap knock-off of ebonics thinking this is hilarious and a legitimate way to present facts and rhetoric.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

      • Country Mouse/City Mouse January 24, 2013 at 7:28 am #

        Ken, Bridgeport is a great town. Independence is a great town. That’s not the point.
        The ideal candidate for administrative positions in local government owns a Master’s Degree in Public Administration, ten or so years experience and responsibilites in local government, and a willingness to relocate to an extremely rurual area. Throw in the fact that the candidate’s bosses (the supervisors) only qualifications needed for their jobs, are that they got the most votes. That’s it. One supervisor, Johnston, gets to be the boss of the government administrator, and he won by 5 votes (Do you see where I’m going with this?). When the qualified candidates ask around and find out the turnover rate in CAOs, supervisors like Johnston wanting to cut everybody’s salary, and (most importantly) … can they adjust from the City to the Country (ala The Country Mouse v The City Mouse story) and live happily ever after?
        I think the supervisors are mistaken that people are lining up in droves to work in Mono or Inyo Counties.

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        • Benett Kessler January 24, 2013 at 10:44 am #

          Bold idea – wait to see what happens. No one is claiming candidates will line up “in droves.”
          BK

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

          • Clarification January 24, 2013 at 11:56 am #

            The point is, these “tax-eater” administrative positions aren’t as easy as most people think they are to fill. Especially for the truly qualified and experienced. It should indeed be interesting to see what happens.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

    • Filling the positions January 23, 2013 at 7:31 pm #

      No bashing intended. Relax. Rumor has it the remoteness (same as Independance BTW) is keeping some very qualified people from moving to the in-the-middle-of nowhere’sville. It’s a matter of logic – not personally bashing anybody’s town.
      Why do you think MMM doesn’t live in Mammoth?
      Ultra-rural isn’t for everyone. And hopefully the county doesn’t have to settle for any less-than-qualified managers. This is a problem that’s sweeping the nation.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 4

    • High Cost of Living January 24, 2013 at 10:18 am #

      Well, it is rather expensive to live in Mammoth – like most tourist destinations. A lot of people simply cannot afford it. Just rich Republicans (wink). So, the bashing is understandable … to a degree where it morphs into nasty.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 7

  3. Kicking back and Laughing January 24, 2013 at 9:30 am #

    Hmmmmm funny anyone that had anything to do with Deputy Madrid’s issues with the county are flying the coop….. I wonder why? First the Sheriff, then the CAO, and now Rita Sherman….. think it is a coincidence? NOT

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    • Elmer Fudd January 25, 2013 at 10:18 am #

      I don’t think Madrid or any individual would have that much influence on anyone to make those decisions. Nice try but Madrid is just not that important.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 6

  4. Outraged Citizen January 24, 2013 at 12:04 pm #

    This has nothing to do with Madrid. What a joke!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4

  5. Ken Warner January 24, 2013 at 12:58 pm #

    …and many of the shadow puppets who post here froth at the mouth about salaries and benefits and pensions being too high — and then we are told that it’s the remoteness that keeps qualified people from taking low paying jobs while pointing out that it’s expensive to live in Mammoth while others froth at the mouth about not supporting local businesses because their prices are not competitive in the World market place that is available at your finger tips..

    It’s all becomming quite clear to me. Nobody has a clue about what they are talking about.

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    • Jeremiah's Alter Ego January 24, 2013 at 4:15 pm #

      Hey don’t talk about the Nations voters like that. . .

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  6. Kicking back and Laughing January 24, 2013 at 1:42 pm #

    I think I hit a nerve LOL

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 5

    • Pop culture January 24, 2013 at 3:52 pm #

      Yes Kicking,
      hitting nerves and laughing seems to be a growing phenomenon in America today.
      Whatever floats yer boat.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  7. Mono Citizen January 24, 2013 at 4:44 pm #

    Hmm.

    Some new and current board members loudly proclaiming that current administration is being paid “outrageous” salaries and/or bashing their performance, and now all the vacancies and an apparently highly qualified interim CAO refusing that amount of money to come work here…cause and effect? Hopefully there is a lesson learned here, and hopefully the County doesn’t now fall too far behind in its important public work.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2

    • What representation? January 25, 2013 at 6:47 am #

      Qualified public servants in administrative positions should be paid according to what the other administrators in the state are paid. Otherwise what we’ll get are elected officials whose only “skills” or “qualifications” are that they got the most votes.
      And quite frankly, other than a few bursts of ego and delegating the hard work to everyone else … what value are they really? And please don’t say they are representing their constituents. One supervisor, Johnston, has contituents that are primarily Mexican in origin and we’ve yet heard a thing from him regarding what he is done or plans to do for those constituents.
      The whole supervisor thing is a complete joke. The most qualified are going elsewhere.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 6

  8. Outraged Citizen January 24, 2013 at 5:38 pm #

    Having the arrogance to suggest that people would leave a job over a single employee, ANY employee for that matter, is just fatuous. These men are moving on to better paying jobs. Good for them. And best of luck to Mrs. Sherman in her retirement.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8

  9. Retirement? January 25, 2013 at 7:31 am #

    “Outraged” -
    The general rumor has it that Ms.Sherman was not offered an extension of her current employment contract. But only she and her county supervisors would know this to be correct.
    The media should be able to verify this.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  10. Uh Huh January 25, 2013 at 12:06 pm #

    I see two issues here. One, a lot of top level employees are leaving, without even giving the new board a chance. Makes me wonder what they were doing that they did not want scrutiny.

    Two. it is being said about high wages, gotta pay them high wages to lure the QUALIFIED people here. Isn’t that how we wound up with Arkens and Muir and the triple M? We didn’t really get what we paid for did we???

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

    • Who is being scrutinized January 25, 2013 at 3:56 pm #

      “I see two issues here. One, a lot of top level employees are leaving, without even giving the new board a chance. Makes me wonder what they were doing that they did not want scrutiny.”

      Are you referring to those who left or the new board?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

      • Uh Huh January 25, 2013 at 5:48 pm #

        those that left. The new board hasn’t had a chance to do anything yet

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  11. Eastside January 25, 2013 at 6:13 pm #

    Mono County is better off now that Arkens is gone (and Muir for that matter). Any CAO will be better than this clown. After eviscerating the County, he knew the Board of Supes were going to hand him his head, that’s why he bailed out early.

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    • Lets face facts January 28, 2013 at 10:44 pm #

      Obviously, he can’t be too much of a clown he’s heading to a new job that pays much better than Mono County. If I read the papers right he also balanced the budget and made the employees work for their pay.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

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