Luman case in closed session

monocourthouse2008According to an order issued by Mono Superior Court Judge Stan Eller, Mono County has to put Dick Luman back to work on May 19th, thirty days from the decision. When the Supervisors meet Tuesday, their lawyers will meet in closed session with them on the Luman case.

Mr. Luman had worked for Mono County Road Department as a mechanic for 15 years. He was fired at the end of 2011 for making a threatening statement during an altercation with his Road Supervisor. He appealed that decision and two out of three Personnel Appeal Board members upheld his termination. Luman went on to Superior Court to appeal the firing.

In April, Judge Eller issued a decision that Luman made a threat of violence but the Judge’s order said “The most extreme form of penalty, termination of employment, was grossly excessive” in view of the law. The Judge ordered Mono County to reinstate Luman with all pay, benefits, seniority and more.

The Judge’s order had also provided Luman with a new penalty hearing that would result in something less than termination. The order says if a penalty is imposed on Luman for his statements made to his supervisor, the amount should be deducted from his back pay. The Judge’s order entitles him to pay from the time of his termination in December of 2011 until his reinstatement.


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11 Responses to Luman case in closed session

  1. Mammothite May 11, 2014 at 8:57 pm #

    It will be very interesting to see if the BOS doubles down on stupid regarding this case. If they are smart, they will put Mr. Luman back to work and call it a wash, as Luman has suffered enough already.

    The wild card is County Counsel. In order to save face, the County Counsel may convince the BOS to keep fighting this lost cause until they are broke. Let’s hope they learned the lesson from Mammoth whose Town Attorney talked them into a 30 million dollar plus losing legal battle over the airport, when they could have settled it for about a milion in the begining.

    Leaving Luman alone and getting a new County Counsel would be the smart move.

    Perhaps some more supplemental reports from the sheriff’s department will be written?

  2. Concerned Citizen May 12, 2014 at 7:30 am #

    I agree with Mammothite the wild card is the county counsel. I do not understand how the BOS has not figured out that they spin all these cases to cover their own butts. They give poor advice and are never held accountable for it. The BOS should sit in on some of these hearings and watch it for themselves. Mr. Vallejo told multiple lies in Mr. Luman’s hearing. I cannot believe that Judge Eller did not do anything about it, because he did call him on them in the courtroom. The BOS need to actually see how unprofessional and unknowledgeable they truly are. It is truly the blind leading the blind with colorful untruths thrown in to keep their own job. Their plans are just delay, delay, delay and pay later. Never mind the 10% penalty that gets added to all this money for 3 years.

    Who am I kidding???…. it is just par for the course for Mono County. Just like the Sheriff’s Department. They just ignore it, and the people pay for their incompetence!

  3. Witness May 12, 2014 at 8:38 am #

    Oh you are right concerned citizen, every day they mess around is another day of pay owed to Mr. Luman plus the maximum interest rate of 10 percent in California! Not to mention the tax payers are paying for this county counsel to be this incompetent! What have these closed session meetings been about? The BOS has the decision! A judge gave an order! What’s the problem! This alternative disaplinary action can be dealt with in the same timely manner it took to hear the case in the first place!

    Let me guess, county counsel is going to talk it to death! Delay after delay!

    Last time I checked time is money right!

  4. Desert Tortoise May 12, 2014 at 4:13 pm #

    The man made a threat of violence against another employee. Regardless of the circumstances that ought to get you fired. Period. If someone makes a threat, is not fired and later makes good on their threat, then management has failed. In this case I think both employees should have been canned. There cannot be room for physical altercations in the work place. The judge in this case is wrong.

    • Benett Kessler May 12, 2014 at 4:32 pm #

      You might consider that you do not know all of the facts. BK

    • Mammothite May 12, 2014 at 5:27 pm #

      Desert Tortoise, Did you even consider reading the initial reports on Sierra Wave of this incident. Once again you pontificate about something that you know little or nothing at all about. Please don’t ever show up for jury duty!

      Luman was the victim and his boss was the instigator. This is until the supplemental reports were ordered to cover up.

      There there is the fact that a very well respected Judge, Stan Eller, ruled in Luman’s favor using some very strong words against Mono County.

      DT, you are quickly becoming the Sierra Wave Buffon.

      • Desert Tortoise May 13, 2014 at 6:59 am #

        Number one, your opinion of me is of no concern to me at all. Maybe I don’t have such a high opinion of you either. Number two, I am quite aware his boss picked a fight with him. That does not excuse threats of violence. Both people should be fired and never re-hired. Neither has any place in public service. If someone starts a fight with you at work, you walk away and call the police. You don’t engage in combat with the other person and you don’t make threats of violence. And before you say it, yes I have been in that position, with a supervisor picking a fight and that is how I handled it. The County Supes should have fired the supervisor, but they do not owe Mr. Luman his job back.

        • Mammothite May 13, 2014 at 2:26 pm #

          It looks like the word Forgiveness is not in your vocabulary.

          What a sad person you must be.

  5. I wonder May 12, 2014 at 8:32 pm #

    I wonder if the BOS will look at upper management ? That’s where things start.

    • Kidding right? May 13, 2014 at 9:02 am #

      Mono County pays no attention to how departments are run. The Sheriff’s Department is proof of that! They do nothing about harassment, strong arm tactics, bullying, and downright making up lies to cover their wrong doings. Supplemental reports are produced to cover up issues. This has been going on for years and I truly believe they actually encourage it!

      Just look at David O’Hara who, testimony showed, harassed employees for years and everyone was aware of it…. what did he get two years severance pay and the golden handshake instead of the firing he truly deserved.

      Just look at Ralph Obenberger has done, and continues to do. He has continuously lied as witnessed by all in Lee Vining and from his own direct testimony in the Madrid situation. What does he get? He is sheriff appointed by the BOS.

      There were multiple complaints about Mr. Luman’s supervisor and they were also continuously ignored. If they would have taken care of this supervisor in the first place Mr. Luman would never have been placed in this situation!

      All of these men are proof that Mono County ignores what upper management does if you are in the good ole boy club. Honesty, integrity, ethics, and professionalism, are definitely not a requirement to be upper management in Mono County. The problem is no one monitors any of them or watches to see if they are truly doing their jobs properly or if they law abiding, fair, or ethical to the employees.

  6. Trevor P. May 13, 2014 at 7:27 am #

    Jim Leddy, are you listening….


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