Goetz leaves Town of Mammoth

Assistant Building official, Johnny Goetz.

Assistant Building official, Johnny Goetz.

An employee of the Town of Mammoth Lakes who remained publicly positive through the painful, devastating job losses, restructuring and debt resolution has now decided to leave his job. Johnny Goetz, Assistant Building Official and head of the employees association since 2006, will go to Truckee with his family.

Goetz was characteristically upbeat yet clearly sad about his decision. He said, “I can’t say enough good things about Mammoth. This was without a doubt the hardest decision we’ve had to make.” Goetz, his wife Heidi and their two sons will move to Truckee. He will start there as Chief Building Official August 2nd.  He worked for the Town of Mammoth for over nine years.

The Goetz family has deep roots in Mammoth. Heidi was born and raised in the community. Her parents, Dennis and Dottie Hartman, have lived in Mammoth since the early days. Goetz said, “From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank everyone here for the lessons, for the good times and for the friendships.”

What about the hard times in Town government, the job losses, the bitterness, the management changes? Is that what led him to leave his job with the Town? Goetz said, “It was hard. I’ve never shied away from a challenge. I’ve always wanted to be there in any way I can. It was not the number one factor. My family is the number one factor.”

Goetz, seen as the symbol of positivity in a failing Town government, said when word got out about his decision it was “very emotional and the support was stunning.” He will stay on to help with recruitment and the transition.


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29 Responses to Goetz leaves Town of Mammoth

  1. irony July 2, 2013 at 9:09 am #

    The exodus continues…

    Last one out, please turn out the lights.

    • SAD July 2, 2013 at 4:12 pm #

      Johnny is a great person and Inspector. He always had a positive attitude. We wish his family and him the best.

  2. Rats! July 2, 2013 at 12:19 pm #

    The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves:

  3. ski4ever July 2, 2013 at 12:49 pm #

    Shocking! I would have never believed that Johnny would leave. i have had so many interactions with him over many years. He was always willing to help out the contractors in any way he could. He would come back to the jobsites when we weren’t ready for inspection in order to keep moving the project forward. Johnny was always the first to volunteer for everything all the time, help with our special events, just an all around class guy.
    Wish you and your family the best of luck, you are a HUGE loss to this Town. Maybe the elected officials will finally see that what they have done to the employees will finally backfire. Maybe we can finally recall them all, this is huge!

  4. Longtime local July 2, 2013 at 8:58 pm #

    How come Robin, Karen, Ellen, and all the other great employees that choose to better or save their futures didn’t get their story told on sierra wave?? Too many good people have been bullied away. What’s going to happened when nobody is left?? I wonder if plows can drive themselves?

    • Benett Kessler July 2, 2013 at 9:07 pm #

      If anyone wants me to tell their story, they should call me. I want to. 760-937-3295.
      Benett Kessler

  5. Huge Loss July 2, 2013 at 9:47 pm #

    Johnny is a class act, always there for everyone. He served the public both on the job and while volunteering his time. He really cared about what happened in Mammoth. I wish him and his family the best, and concrats on the new job you earned it.

  6. MK July 3, 2013 at 9:11 am #

    I am truly shocked.
    Johnny has been so involved and well liked in this community. He will be missed. It is saddening that so many people are leaving although we cannot blame them. In this case The Goetz family must do what is best for them and their future.
    We wish them all the best.

  7. Mel July 3, 2013 at 11:05 am #

    @longtime local – there wasn’t a story because this is far bigger than losing planners!

    What a loss, this will be devastating to everyone from the contractors, the community, the town employees. Johnny will be missed as he always was fair with everyone. I selfishly am sad for my family, but I understand the decision and support it. It is amazing that other cities are rebounding and the Mammoth is just continuing to lose employees (not just town employees).
    Good luck to you guys and hope we can have someone step in with as much integrity as you possess. Take care of your family!

    • Desert Tortoise July 3, 2013 at 4:18 pm #

      Eh, not true. Ridgecrest down south is shedding employees as it struggles with budgetary problems in part created by over reliance on RDA funds for basic services.

  8. RM July 3, 2013 at 10:47 pm #

    What i have not heard mentioned yet is that we are losing a local Hero. Johnny is a very active member of the Mammoth Lakes Fire Dept and an experienced rescuer . His leadership qualities and positive attitude as the representative of the association will be irreplaceable. Thanks Johnny, Its been a pleasure Saving lives with you. All those times you were there to give me relationship advice will not be forgotten. I should have listened to you. See you Buddy .

  9. Dan July 3, 2013 at 11:03 pm #

    Wishing Johnny and family the best. You will be missed as I am sure this was not an easy decision. Good luck as we will visit to see you guys. Completely agree with the comment, you are a class act.

  10. Ken Warner July 4, 2013 at 9:44 am #

    Over and over we hear that both Mammoth Lakes and Mono County and the rest of the Owens Valley is a tourism based economy.

    Mammoth Lakes puts just about all it’s resources into promoting tourism to the detriment of public safety and the quality of life for it’s residents. Mono County also puts a fair amount of its resources into tourism. The airport. Millions for marketing and events and on and on…

    Yet all the indicators of tourism related business are declining and have been declining for nearly 10 years.. TOT, sales tax, the vitality of the two ski areas. All declining.

    If tourism is the core business of Mammoth Lakes and Mono County and both entities focus most of their efforts ad resources toward increasing tourism and tourism declines. Why isn’t it working?

    Is it the premise that tourism should be the core industry of Mammoth Lakes and Mono County? Is it the methodology of how they attack the problem? What?

    Maybe tourism is one of those “same old things” Rusty warned against continuing to do. Rusty’s words — and mine for years.

    So it’s hard to be sad about events that are inevitable results of conscious efforts by our “leadership”.

  11. Firefighter family July 4, 2013 at 1:43 pm #

    Johnny and his family weathered 8 pay cuts, in 9 years of employment. No one can afford to live on less money, especially people raising a family here in Mammoth. It is ridiculous to expect devoted employees to take numerous cuts in salary. Johnny was always a person who worked beyond the scheduled hours, and volunteered at many Town events on his own time. He was also a valued member of the Mammoth Lakes Fire Dept. and served as an engineer with the department, as well as supporting the fire department with special events, search and rescue situations, etc. It is indeed very sad for anyone who knows the Goetz family to say goodbye. Unfortunately, as long as our current Town management is in power, I fear theirs will not be the last family to leave.

  12. PJ July 4, 2013 at 11:01 pm #

    Johnny is a man of great integrity and a class act. His loss leaves yet another void for TOML. Leaders like him are critical to taking this Town to a new level and restoring integrity and fairness in government. A servant leadership mindset is needed to rebuild faith in the system. Instead, a great talent has to move on because the current leadership is loosely tethered to Pluto with no hope of turning the ship around. How many people with great skillsets have left and how many more are on the way out as well? What a shame. Our loss is Truckee’s gain.

    • MK July 5, 2013 at 3:46 pm #

      Looks like another is leaving also.
      Ray Jarvis.
      Gee I wonder why, Here is the press release pertaining to Jarvis.

      “Ray is leaving for reasons that are both professional and personal. In his case,
      the new position in South Lake Tahoe is going to be more narrowly focused on
      public works.”

      Do ya think they gave this guy too much hassle.

  13. TOML Local July 5, 2013 at 2:04 pm #

    It is so very sad to watch Matthew & Michael decimate our local government. These two Council Members do not care how many Town Employees leave. If fact, they are happy to see them go! Until the entire Council opens their eyes and realizes that we need to change the Management style that is currently in place, we are going to continue to lose more and more valuable Town employees like Johnny!

    These two need to seriously ask themselves “What is the role of government?” I for one am quite sure that it is not providing Tourism Dollars so that private businesses can be successful. Not to say that Tourism is not important, it is our life’s blood. However, with limited financial resources, the funding should not come from the general fund!

    The general fund should be paying for Public Safety, Infracture Maintenance, and Recreation first! Secondly, our Town Council should be focusing on a way to pay down
    this debt to get rid of it within the next five years. Maybe then someone will want to invest here.

    Godspeed to you Johnny! And good luck in your new future!

    • tom July 7, 2013 at 9:55 am #

      Wow, why the bash on two council members, does it not take 3 to vote anyway, these people QUIT ,they did not get fired. I know the two council members mentioned and th know tey like Johnny and Ray very much, so get your facts straight.

      • J.J. July 8, 2013 at 7:27 am #

        Here’s the facts, their both jealous of the pensions of public employees and consider tax revenue that fund them as their money. Businesses happen to be the collecting mechanism of choice for many taxes,to them it is their money.

        Their plan is to privatize everything possible to enrich a few cronies using the backs of cheap, migrant, with no town benefits contract labor. These folks were forced out by working conditions that became intolerable on purpose. Getting the police officers to go elsewhere was by design not happenstance too.

        Mammoth, the new Brokeback Mountain, even plutocracies need a top and a bottom.

    • skijane July 7, 2013 at 10:36 am #

      I don’t know why Michael and Matthew are responsible – it takes 3 council votes to move forward with any decision. I’ve watched a lot of council meetings and I’ve never heard them say anything bad about employees. Johnny and Ray, while awesome guys and excellent employees, left on their own accord. Lets face it, Mammoth is struggling due to decisions made by past leadership and the best way to pay off our debts is through the dollars tourism brings in. The money private businesses receive by way of increased tourism boosts the general fund, which in turn increases the Town’s ability to pay for more employees and infrastructure.

      • getaclue July 9, 2013 at 11:34 am #


        These people are leaving because this town is lacking direction or leadership. If you think Matt or Michael are leaders you are sadly mistaken. This Council is a mess. The town is a form of government and not a for profit business. It exists to make sure the people of this town have life safety and the infrastructure doesn’t crumble around them. 2 million dollars and maybe substantially more (7 million) is to be given to tourism? It sounds like the best snake oil salesman is the Tourism Director. I was under the impression tourism was to be self sustaining after receiving start up money from the Town. Why do they need to be given the lion share instead of taking 2 million to help pay the debt so the town can sustain itself. I think the reason Matt and Micheal are on the Council, is for self gain and the gains for a select few. When is this town going to stand up and say enough is enough. 5 million for tourism seems to be above and beyond a fair amount as far as I am concerned. Matt and Michael think they can bring in a sub par group for Town staff and compete with Vale, Aspen,Tahoe or even Utah. Your Dreaming.That’s why highly skilled professionals with many many years of expertise are leaving this town.

      • It's just business July 26, 2013 at 11:24 am #

        Skijane –

        Lehman, Raimondo and Eastman are all businessmen.
        Businessmen always look after their businesses first and foremost and to hell with everybody else.

        In bad times … look out! More self-serving corruption to come!

        • JJ July 26, 2013 at 1:56 pm #

          Businessman survive on a customers money, stop being a customer and the corrupt businessmen goes away too.

  14. ferdinand lopez July 7, 2013 at 5:27 pm #

    what happened to the fireworks?

    • J.J. July 8, 2013 at 7:06 am #

      The brain trust decided that all those wallets in Crowley on the fourth of July night was just to painful. They want to keep the “money” in town so they can profit while using the town tax revenues as their motive. These misers will do anything for a dollar even if it needlessly subjects the town to possibly being burnt to the ground.

  15. Steve July 9, 2013 at 6:32 am #

    There all leaving… they know the next law suit will be filed the day after they pass the TBID…

  16. Bill July 16, 2013 at 10:25 pm #

    I just read this, as we were on vacation, and as a local contractor – what a shame to lose this type of person. Johnny always was fair and balanced, unlike some of his colleagues. This Town Council MUST realize they are missing something. I have had the pleasure of dealing with the building department over many years and many projects and he will be missed. The Town Council needs to come to the reality that unless they get rid of their self serving motivation more qualified and liked employees will follow. This is not the direction we set out to almost 30 years ago.

    If the Town Council, specifically M & M think they are doing good for this Town, WAKE UP YOU MORONS! There is an argument to offset labor cost but not at the cost of people valued the most. If you really understood what is going on you would do whatever it takes to keep the good and get rid of the bad. Just ask the people and act on what you should.

    Johnny, we will visit, we will never forget the values and hardworking skills you possessed, and can only hope somehow this will continue within the Town. Good for you Truckee, smart move.


  17. Why July 25, 2013 at 10:44 pm #

    We are losing high quality and community oriented people. Please ask yourself a simple question – why?

    The reason is simple public servants do us a service, including my family and when 0 appreciation continues, you get this.

    As an employee of a specialty contractor I. Town I will say Johnny is missed by me. I remember the first inspection that I had to walk without my boss very clearly

  18. Why July 25, 2013 at 10:56 pm #

    A speciality contractor in town , sorry never done this – previous post.

    Johnny was clear and explained all the good and the one bad. He never told my boss – I think and waited until it was fixed per the code. It was the good I remember that I could do this and still do to this day. Thank you from my family.

    You are appreciated from the contractors – big or small or just an employee of the contractor.

    for some of you on town council please listen to mrs. Cage and bring him back or someone like him not a big city or contract inspector who doesn’t care nor willing to assist.


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