Vernon California - a company town

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Offline TahoeBlue

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Vernon California - a company town
« on: October 11, 2011, 02:11:40 pm »
I want to concentrate some of the stories I've collected regarding Vernon Calif. - Today's company town.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/30/vernon-california-disincorporation_n_941828.html
Vernon, California Saved From Disincorporation
By JULIET WILLIAMS   08/30/11 01:03 AM ET

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The California Senate voted on Monday against dissolving the troubled Los Angeles-area city of Vernon, hours after the Internal Revenue Service notified city officials that it was auditing a $419 million tax-exempt bond deal.

The bill by Assembly Speaker John Perez, D-Los Angeles, failed the Senate on a 17-13 vote. Perez said the city of fewer than 100 residents is too corrupt to function properly, even if it makes major reforms.

Vernon is one of several small Los Angeles suburbs, including Bell and Temple City, where top officials have been accused of using their positions to line their own pockets. Three top Vernon officials have been convicted of corruption charges for misusing public funds, and some employees and contractors have taken home nearly $1 million a year.

Democrats were torn between the speaker's legislation and a counter-proposal by Sen. Kevin de Leon, another Los Angeles Democrat who last week proposed a laundry list of reforms the city should make in order to stave off disincorporation. City officials approved many of those plans at a special council meeting last week.

...

http://articles.latimes.com/2011/sep/09/local/la-me-vernon-20110909
Vernon audit is ordered by Legislature

The examination will focus on the city's finances and conduct over the last five years as well as ongoing reforms. It's expected to be completed in April.
September 09, 2011|By Sam Allen, Los Angeles Times

The state Legislature approved an audit of the city of Vernon on Thursday, a week after lawmakers rejected a controversial plan to disband the city.

The audit, requested by state Sen. Kevin De León (D-Los Angeles), will examine the city's finances and conduct over the last five years as well as its ongoing reforms, De León's office said. It is expected to be completed in April.

De León's request came in response to a Times' story on recent investment losses in Vernon's power business. Since 2005, the city has suffered a $130-million decline in net assets and amassed close to $500 million in debt.

During the same period, Vernon's expenditures on salaries and legal fees rose steadily. Five city officials made more than $500,000 a year, and City Council members were among the highest paid in the state.

The industrial city, just south of downtown L.A., is home to roughly 1,800 businesses but only 112 residents. Most of the residents live in homes owned by City Hall.
...

http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2011/04/28/1990785/california-assembly-oks-bill-to.html
California Assembly OKs bill to dissolve beleaguered city of Vernon - Thursday, Apr. 28, 2011
...
Thursday's 58-7 vote showed that Vernon's high-powered lobbying is paying dividends: Three lawmakers listed as co-authors of AB 46 voted against the bill and nine others abstained.

Fred MacFarlane, Vernon spokesman, said prospects for derailing AB 46 may be better in the Senate.
...
AB 46 could make the minuscule but tax-rich city a prime takeover target by Los Angeles or other neighboring cities
....
The legislation would place Vernon under the immediate control of Los Angeles County. Any future annexation attempts would be decided by the local agency formation commission.

Perez proposed AB 46 in response to what he calls an "unacceptable and unprecedented level of corruption" in Vernon, an industrial hub of fewer than 100 people that generates more than $300 million in state and local taxes.

The Los Angeles Democrat contends that Vernon is a virtual fiefdom where leaders handpick their colleagues: Four of five current City Council members joined the panel as appointees, not election winners.

Because the city owns most of Vernon's housing stock, it controls who resides in the city - renting to friends, relatives and supporters, many of whom say little about political corruption, Perez said.

Vernon sparked headlines last year for the indictment of former city manager Donal O'Callaghan on conflict of interest charges, and for an investigation by the attorney general's office into issues that included massive pay for the city's leaders in years past.

Six Vernon officials received more than $500,000 in compensation in one or more of the years between 2005 and 2010, city records show.

http://www.joplinglobe.com/national/x415197885/Embattled-California-city-of-Vernon-in-a-battle-to-survive
March 2, 2011
Embattled California city of Vernon in a battle to survive   ( Ca bill AB 46 )
Anonymous From MCT The Joplin Globe Wed Mar 02, 2011, 02:25 PM CST

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California’s tiniest city is fighting to survive — literally — by launching a big-money brawl pitting some of the Capitol’s most powerful players against Assembly Speaker John A. Perez.

Perez sparked the fight by proposing to dissolve the city of Vernon over allegations of corruption and abuse of power in the tax-rich Los Angeles County community.

Only about 100 people live there but more than 50,000 work in the unusual city, which was designed as an industrial hub and incorporated in 1905.
...
The Los Angeles Democrat said leaders virtually handpick their colleagues: Four of five current council members joined the panel as appointees, not election winners.
...
Six Vernon officials received more than $500,000 in compensation in one or more years between 2005 and 2010, city records show. Eric T. Fresch, former city attorney and city administrator, topped the list with earnings above $1 million for four straight years.

The highest-paid retiree in California’s pension system is a former Vernon city administrator, Bruce Malkenhorst Sr., who receives more than $500,000 per year. He awaits trial on charges that he embezzled about $60,000 in public funds for massages, golf and other personal use.

Corruption does not spark backlash because Vernon is the “only example that I’ve seen of a city with no independent electorate,” Perez said.
...

Two powerhouse international law firms plan a squeeze play. Former Democratic Congressman Vic Fazio, now with Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, will strategize to kill the bill. A second firm, Latham & Watkins, will pursue a “litigation strategy” to keep Vernon alive, according to a city contract.

http://auburnjournal.com/detail/155497.html
Placer County’s $100,000 club: 21 retirees receiving six-figure pensions
...
The highest pension is being collected by city of Vernon retiree Bruce Malkenhorst, who receives $509,664 annually, according to the website.
...

| - - - -

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2009/05/for-years-bruce-malkenhorst-sr-reigned-as-the-highest-paid-city-official-in-california-riding-in-limousines-and-making-m.html
Indicted Vernon official collecting $500,000 annual pension
May 7, 2009 |  6:47 pm

For years, Bruce Malkenhorst Sr. reigned as the highest-paid city official in California, riding in limousines and making more than half a million dollars a year as city administrator for the tiny industrial town of Vernon. Then the 74-year-old was charged with embezzling public funds.

But Malkenhorst still sits at the top -- this time as the retiree collecting the most money from the state’s public employee pension fund. Malkenhorst draws about $500,000 a year in state pension benefits, even as he awaits a trial.
...
“We can’t afford to pay for this and have a government that functions,” she said. Malkenhorst far outpaced the second person on the list, a UCLA physician, who receives $296,555. Vernon officials had no comment Thursday on the pension. Malkenhorst, who has denied any wrongdoing, could not be reached for comment.

Los Angeles County prosecutors allege that he spent $60,000 in city money for personal use, including massages, golf outings and political contributions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vernon,_California
Vernon is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States. The resident population was 91 at the 2000 United States Census. It has the smallest population of any incorporated city in Southern California. Most of the city's land area is occupied by industrial facilities
...
Consisting almost entirely of warehouses and factories, the city's main industries are food service manufacturing, metalworking, and manufacture of glass and plastic equipment. Most housing is owned by the city and its few residents are employed within the city limits. There are approximately 46,000 direct and 54,000 indirect mostly skilled workers employed by business within the City of Vernon. Among the multitude of businesses is Bon Appetit Bakery and Farmer John Meat Packing, whose products are highly visible in many convenience stores and service stations. True Religion, a national designer of luxury jeans and other apparel, is headquartered in Vernon. The city is also home to several rendering plants, food processors, smelters and metal working companies.
...
Most of the 91 residents of Vernon were city employees. Many lived in housing owned by the city government.

As of 2006 about 44,000 people who work in Vernon daily live outside of Vernon
...
In the state legislature Vernon is located in the 22nd Senate District, represented by Democrat Gilbert Cedillo, and in the 46th Assembly District, represented by Democrat John Pérez.

Federally, Vernon is located in California's 34th congressional district is represented by Democrat Lucille Roybal-Allard.


Antonio Villaraigosa (left) John A. Pérez (right)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Pérez
John A. Pérez is a union organizer and politician from Los Angeles, California, who has been the Speaker of the California State Assembly since March 1, 2010. A Democrat, he represents the 46th district in the California State Assembly.
...
He is the cousin of Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and has spent seven years handling political matters for the United Food and Commercial Workers, a union representing supermarket workers,[1] and also has served as political director of the California Labor Federation
...
Pérez is a member of the Democratic National Committee, which made him a superdelegate to the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver...Pérez is openly gay – he is the first openly LGBT Speaker of the California State Assembly...Pérez was the first gay person of color to be elected to the state legislature


Mayor Villaraigosa speaks with Senator Gilbert Cedillo and LA County Federation of Labor Executive Secretary-Treasure Miguel Contreras.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gilbert_Cedillo
Gilbert Cedillo

Cedillo worked for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Los Angeles County's largest union, where he served as general manager from 1990 to 1996
...
played a critical role in securing $364 million in federal assistance to ensure that the Los Angeles County Health Care system remained afloat.

President Bill Clinton stated that his decision to provide funding "was reached after critical consultations with SEIU...While he is most widely known for his attempts to reinstate driver's licenses to illegal immigrants, Cedillo has also worked on increasing and expanding access to health care, ....
Gil Cedillo is a member of the Council of La Raza
....

Cedillo has tried nine times since 1998 to get bills passed in the California State Legislature that would allow illegal aliens to obtain driver's licenses.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Roybal
Edward Roybal

In 1976 he became a founder of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) and later co-founded the [(National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials)] (NALEO).
...
In 1978, Roybal was involved in a vote-buying scheme, known as the Koreagate scandal, in which he admitted to lying to the House Ethics Committee about accepting a $1,000 gift from a South Korean lobbyist, Tongsun Park. After requests by Hispanic leaders and testimony from the other two Representatives accused — Ronald Dellums and Phillip Burton — the potential censure was reduced to a reprimand (the same sanction given the other two Representatives involved). Undeterred, he ran for reelection the same year and won 70% of the vote.

Roybal retired in 1993 after thirty years in office.

That year, following redistricting, his daughter Lucille Roybal-Allard became the Representative for the 33rd District, which contained part of Roybal's district, while Xavier Becerra, with Roybal's endorsement, won election in 30th District, which included much of the remaining territory of Roybal's former 25th District.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucille_Roybal-Allard
Lucille Roybal-Allard
She became the 33rd Congressional District's representative in November 1992
Before being elected to Congress Roybal-Allard was a member of the California State Assembly [1] from 1986 to 1992.

In 1992, she won the Democratic nomination for the newly created 33rd District. She won handily in November, and has been reelected seven times with no substantive opposition. Her district was renumbered as the 34th after the 2000 Census.

She is the first Mexican-American woman to serve in Congress.
She currently sits on the House Appropriations and Standards of Official Conduct committees

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koreagate
Koreagate" was an American political scandal in 1976 involving South Korean political figures seeking influence from 10 Democratic members of Congress. A

n immediate goal of the scandal seems to have been reversing President Richard Nixon's decision to withdraw troops from South Korea. It involved the Korea Central Intelligence Agency (KCIA) allegedly funneling bribes and favors through Korean businessman Tongsun Park in an attempt to gain favor and influence for South Korean objectives. Some 115 members of Congress were supposedly involved. Speculation also focused on the role of Unification Church founder Sun Myung Moon, former KCIA Director Kim Hyung Wook, and former South Korean Prime Minister Chung Il Kwon.[1][2]


http://dbacon.igc.org/Imgrants/2009overhillfarms.html
VERNON, CA (6/18/09) -- The production lines at Overhill Farms move very quickly
...
On May 31 254 people, including Agustiano, were fired. Their crime? According to Overhill Farms, they had bad Social Security numbers. Behind this accusation is the unspoken assumption that the workers' numbers are no good because they have no legal immigration status.
...
This mass termination is the largest in many years, the first of its scale under the Obama administration. Workplace enforcement is a keystone of the administration's immigration policy, as it was under George Bush. The Overhill Farms firings are a window into a future in which this kind of immigration enforcement becomes widespread in workplaces across the country.
...
Overhill Farms, with over 800 employees, was audited by the Internal Revenue Service earlier this year. According to John Grant, packinghouse division director for Local 770 of the United Food and Commercial Workers, the IRS was looking at the company's books for 2006-7. “They found discrepancies in the Social Security numbers of many workers,” he says. “Overhill then sent a letter on April 6 to 254 people, giving them 30 days to reconcile their numbers with Social Security. They are all members of our union.”
...
Although Overhill lawyers have threatened Lopez, the organization has discussed plans to conduct a consumer education program, because Overhill sells its products to fast food chains like Jack-in-the-Box, Panda Express and Pollo Loco. “We're their customers,” Agustiano says, “and we're going to tell the media what happened to us.”

http://www.ktla.com/news/landing/ktla-meat-grinder-leg-severed,0,479882.story
Man's Legs Amputated after Fall into Meat Grinder

VERNON -- A man working at a meat packing plant in Vernon lost his legs when he fell into a meat grinder, according to police. The accident happened around 3 a.m. Saturday at Jobbers Meat Packing Inc., located in the 3300 block of Fruitland Avenue

http://www.cityofvernon.org/assets/docs/News%20Docs/Vernon%20News_Vernon%20Workers%20Ad%20Blitz_70911.pdf
July 11, 2011 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Fred MacFarlane – (213) 369-8425

Vernon workers deliver simple message in TV ad blitz to State Capitol politicians: Protect Our Jobs Vernon, CA – Vernon workers will blanket the TV market in Sacramento this week to deliver their ‘Protect Our Jobs’ message to California lawmakers.
State Capitol politicians will get a steady stream of ‘Vernon Works’ advertising spots this week before they adjourn for summer recess on Friday, July 15. The Vernon Works 30- second advertisements feature a collection of union and nonunion workers that live in cities throughout L.A. County but spend their workdays producing products at Vernonbased
companies.

http://cityofvernon.org/iworkinvernon/
Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole ; He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee. - Job 5

Offline platinumpi4u

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Re: Vernon California - a company town
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2011, 04:08:29 pm »
city of vernon is as dirty as it gets - they have a town population of just over 100 - which means that the city gov controls every aspect of this town - most of the population are just the city workers - living in city owned apartments.... mostly industrial and manufacturing - the state hates them because they have their own small power utility... but city is as shifty as shit...

Offline TahoeBlue

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Re: Vernon California - a company town
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2012, 01:02:18 pm »
I should have posted this earlier.... powers that be story....

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/30/vernon-california-disincorporation_n_941828.html
Vernon, California Saved From Disincorporation

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The California Senate voted on Monday against dissolving the troubled Los Angeles-area city of Vernon, hours after the Internal Revenue Service notified city officials that it was auditing a $419 million tax-exempt bond deal.

The bill by Assembly Speaker John Perez, D-Los Angeles, failed the Senate on a 17-13 vote. Perez said the city of fewer than 100 residents is too corrupt to function properly, even if it makes major reforms.

Vernon is one of several small Los Angeles suburbs, including Bell and Temple City, where top officials have been accused of using their positions to line their own pockets. Three top Vernon officials have been convicted of corruption charges for misusing public funds, and some employees and contractors have taken home nearly $1 million a year.
...
"The saga of Vernon will not be complete until the city follows through on its commitment to implement the aggressive reforms I proposed. I am seeking permanent and lasting reform in that city," de Leon said after the vote.

http://www.bondbuyer.com/issues/121_9/vernon-california-revenue-bonds-1035213-1.html
Troubled Vernon Issues [Bonds] With Ease
Calif. City’s Deal Is Oversubscribed
Friday, January 13, 2012
 
...

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System is conducting an examination of retirement benefits paid to public officials that is expected to be released in mid-February. A joint legislative audit will be released in April.
 
The benefits paid to Bruce Malkenhorst Sr., a former Vernon city manager convicted on charges of misappropriating funds, are considered to be among the state’s most excessive, Hayes said. He collects a $500,000 annual pension.
 
De Leon is working on a bill that would prevent former city officials convicted of embezzlement from receiving pensions, Hayes said.


http://articles.latimes.com/2012/mar/29/local/la-me-vernon-voters-20120329
Vernon launches investigation into voter registration
The city's ethics advisor has received complaints about a surge in new voters. One small home has nine registered voters, with six last names.
March 29, 2012|By Sam Allen, Los Angeles Times

The city of Vernon has launched an investigation of questionable voter registrations, weeks before its first election since a series of government reforms were enacted.

The city, which was nearly disincorporated last year after a series of corruption scandals, has received several complaints about a surge of new registered voters, said John Van de Kamp, the former state attorney general who is acting as Vernon's ethics advisor.

County records show there are nine registered voters — with six different last names — at one small home owned by the city.

There are currently 70 people registered to vote in Vernon.
Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole ; He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee. - Job 5

Offline TahoeBlue

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Re: Vernon California - a company town
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2012, 03:53:52 pm »
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/head-troubled-calif-city-found-dead-16682699
Former Head of Troubled Calif. City Found DeadVERNON, Calif. June 30, 2012 (AP)

The body of a former administrator of the embattled city of Vernon was found in the water off a San Francisco Bay area island on the same day the California auditor's office issued a report criticizing the way he and others managed the tiny, scandal-plagued industrial town.
 
The body of Eric T. Fresch was discovered Thursday floating off Angel Island, said Park Superintendent Amy Brees. She said his bicycle was found nearby.
 
Brees told The Associated Press that Fresch, 58, had taken a boat to the island and park rangers went looking for him when he didn't return to the mainland.
 
She said results of an autopsy by the Marin County coroner's office were pending. Meanwhile, investigators were attempting to locate witnesses to determine how he died.
 
Earlier Thursday, the California State Auditor's office had issued a 185-page report accusing the city of implementing few of the reforms it promised after state officials threatened last year to disincorporate Vernon amid corruption allegations.
 
About 50,000 people work in Vernon, a 5.2-square-mile warren of warehouses and factories in the shadow of Los Angeles, but only about 100 actually live there.
 
Among other things, the report said, Vernon lacks sufficient controls on its contracting for services.
 
Auditors noted that Fresch's law firm was given a contract for legal services in 2010 that contained no spending limit, and that between 2005 and 2011 his firm was paid more than $5 million.
 
Vernon paid Fresch $1.65 million in 2008, according to documents released by then-Attorney General Jerry Brown in 2010, when Brown announced an investigation into exorbitant salaries paid to public officials of small Southern California cities.
 
California Auditor Elaine Howle told the Los Angeles Times her office tried to interview Fresch as it prepared the audit, but he repeatedly ducked calls and the efforts of subpoena servers.
 
"I have never experienced something like this before," she said. "From our perspective, it's very suspicious."

 
Several other former Vernon officials have been paid more than $1 million a year and several, although not Fresch, have been convicted of corruption charges.
 
The City Council itself paid its five part-time members $60,000 to $100,000 a year while providing them with city subsidized housing that rented for $120 to $360 a month.
 
Word of the salaries and perks led state Assembly Speaker John Perez to introduce a bill to disincorporate Vernon last year, but the effort died after the city adopted a number of reforms, including limiting council members to two, five-year terms and slashing officials' salaries.
 
Thursday's audit said the city has not put in place policies that would actually implement many of those reforms and that others will take years to achieve.


http://articles.latimes.com/2010/sep/09/local/la-me-vernon-luxury-20100909-1
Top officials in Vernon traveled lavishly at city expense
The officials, among the highest-paid in the state, billed hundreds of thousands of dollars to the city for first-class flights, luxury hotels and limousines between 2005 and 2010.
September 09, 2010 |By Sam Allen and Hector Becerra, Los Angeles Times

Top administrators in Vernon, already among the highest-paid local officials in the state, racked up hundreds of thousands of dollars in city-paid expenses on first-class flights, luxury hotels like the Ritz Carlton and limousine service, records reviewed by The Times show.

The records, which cover 2005-2010, detail lavish travel expenses billed to the city by its top executives, including then-city administrators Donal O'Callaghan and Eric T. Fresch. Some of the trips occurred as recently as this year, when the city laid off employees and canceled the life and health insurance benefits of city workers' spouses and children because of budget problems.

http://articles.latimes.com/2012/jun/30/local/la-me-0630-fresch-20120630
Former Vernon official Eric T. Fresch found dead in park

Rangers at Angel Island State Park discover the remains of the former consultant, who had been the subject of a subpoena during an investigation of city's finances.

June 30, 2012|By Esmeralda Bermudez and Hector Becerra, Los Angeles Times


Eric T. Fresch, the former top Vernon official whose tenure became a lightning rod in last year's effort to disincorporate the small industrial city, was found dead at a state park in the Bay Area, officials said Friday.

 The body of Fresch, 58, was discovered by rangers Thursday evening at Angel Island State Park, which is located in San Francisco Bay not far from Fresch's home in Tiburon.

Tiburon Battalion Chief Ed Lynch said Fresch had been cycling around the island with his wife before they got separated. When she couldn't find him, she reported Fresch missing.

 "He was at the bottom of a real steep embankment. It appeared he fell about 150 feet and landed in the shore line, partially in the water," Lynch said. "It was reported that he had severe head trauma."

 Sgt. Keith Boyd of the Marin County Sheriff's Office Coroner Division said there appeared to be no witnesses. He said the results of Fresch's autopsy could be available in two to six weeks.

"It could have been a natural death, an accident where he fell and crashed, or a suicide, where it was intentional on his behalf," Boyd said.

 Fresch's death came on the same day a state audit was released painting a dire picture of Vernon's finances. The report raised questions about the city's contracting and investment decisions during the time when Fresch was its top administrator.

 The auditor said her staff could not reach Fresch for an interview despite a deposition subpoena and repeated attempts by process servers to track him down. In response to those claims, a state senator called for Los Angeles County prosecutors to investigate Fresch.

Last month, the California Public Employees Retirement System announced that it was slashing Fresch's pension after finding irregularities with it and those of other Vernon officials.

Fresch was widely viewed as the most powerful decision-maker in the city's government in recent years, and he made as much as $1.6 million in 2008. He began advising Vernon as an outside attorney in the 1980s and in 2003 became city attorney. He was the city administrator from 2006 to 2009 before moving to a consulting role. Late last year, Vernon announced Fresch would end his service to the city in May.


[ It's hard to find someone without a discription or a PHOTO! ]

http://www.sfbayareaobserver.com/2010_12_19_archive.html
Sunday, December 19, 2010
For Marin’s Eric T. Fresch, a gig to fly for

The L. A. Times says there’s no image of him on the Internet. He’s so behind-the-scenes that a local calls him “the Wizard of Oz.” We’re talking about Marin attorney Eric T. Fresch, 56, whose day job for years has been as city administrator and supreme advisor to the tiny-but-wealthy Los Angeles-area enclave of Vernon, home to fewer than 100 people.

The Times says Fresch, who lives in a 3,200-square-foot Tiburon home overlooking the bay, is “one of the highest paid public officials ever,” having raked in $7.5 million in salary and fees since 2005. Why does it matter?:

With the city increasingly under political fire — state Assembly Speaker John Pérez (D-Los Angeles) has proposed legislation to dissolve it — Fresch's pay has become a rallying point for those who've long said Vernon is run for the benefit of its leaders. The battle over Vernon's survival as an independent city increasingly has pushed this inside figure into the public eye. State Atty. Gen. Jerry Brown, who is investigating city officials' salaries and spending, alluded to Fresch's as “excessive” and “egregious."
 
Add: The LAT notes the long commute from Marin County, but says Fresch is known for flying first class.

[ Nobody knows this guy or what he looks like and they give no description of him at all !!!! :]
 
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/06/coroner-seeks-publics-help-in-death-of-ex-vernon-official.html
Officials investigating the death of a former top Vernon official whose body was found Thursday evening at a state park in the Bay Area are seeking the public’s help to determine how he died.
 
We’re looking to talk to anyone who may have seen him on the island or could provide information about the circumstances that could have led to his death,” said Sgt. Keith Boyd with the Marin County Sheriff’s Office Coroner’s Division.
 
Eric T. Fresch, 58, was found by rangers around 6 p.m. at Angel Island State Park, which is in San Francisco Bay not far from Fresch's home in Tiburon.
 
Amy Brees, an Angel Island State Park superintendent, said rangers began searching for Fresch after receiving a call Thursday afternoon that he had been cycling on the island but never came home.
 
"He hadn't returned on the boat he was expected to return on," said Brees
, adding that Fresch's body was found in the water near the shore
...
Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole ; He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee. - Job 5

Offline TahoeBlue

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Re: Vernon California - a company town
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2012, 04:31:06 pm »

Tiny Vernon spends big on lawyers
The mostly industrial city with few residents has doled out more to attorneys in the last five years than much bigger Glendale or Pasadena. Most of the tab is for outside firms, primarily large, prestigious ones.
January 21, 2011 |By Sam Allen and Hector Becerra, Los Angeles Times
...

Vernon spent far more on attorneys over the last five years than Pasadena or Glendale, two bigger cities that, like Vernon, also run their own power departments. Indeed, city records show that since 2005, Vernon has had more private law firms working for it (34) than households (26).

Vernon's billing records were obtained by The Times through the California Public Records Act. The documents indicate that of the city's total legal bills since 2005, about $42 million went to private firms, while the rest went to the city's in-house legal department. The records do not break down what specific legal services the attorneys provided. By comparison, Long Beach spent $27 million on outside firms during that period.
...
The state attorney general's office launched an investigation of the city in September after The Times revealed the hefty compensation paid to top Vernon officials, including former City Atty. Eric T. Fresch, who made $1.65 million in 2008. Fresch is now a legal consultant for the city, earning $525 an hour.
...

L.A. County Deputy Dist. Atty. Max Huntsman, who helped prosecute Vernon's longtime mayor and city administrator on public corruption charges four years ago, said Vernon's private attorneys battled to prevent prosecutors from seizing public records. After a year of wrangling, a judge finally ordered the city to release the documents.
...
He pointed to Vernon's recent but failed campaign to build a 943-megawatt, $450-million power plant for which the city assembled a team of consultants and lawyers as well as some of the region's biggest political heavyweights. Former state Sen. Martha Escutia, former Assemblyman Tom Calderon, former L.A. Councilman Richard Alatorre and former Assemblyman Mike Roos were all enlisted to lobby neighboring cities and Sacramento officials on Vernon's behalf.

"It's part and parcel of a corporate mentality that they have," De La Torre said of Vernon's spending on lawyers and lobbyists. "They throw money at their problems; that's what they do. They don't have the normal concerns of a public entity."


Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole ; He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee. - Job 5

Offline platinumpi4u

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Re: Vernon California - a company town
« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2012, 01:57:17 pm »
Now, not only do they not get their upgraded power plant, but they don't have to pay huge attorney fees to the insiders who were running things - a win for the powers that be who wish to take this 'gem' out of the rough for them selves, from the hands of the previous vernon aristocracy. Smooth Move...

I knew one of those guys was going to end up dead sooner or later, but I think he committed suicide.

Offline TahoeBlue

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Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole ; He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee. - Job 5

Offline TahoeBlue

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Re: Vernon California - a company town
« Reply #7 on: November 21, 2012, 01:10:00 pm »
Again the SEIU Union with Dem. party government cover goes into action...

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2012/11/20/Thanksgiving-LAX-shutdown-union
Happy Thanksgiving: SEIU Unions Shut Down Traffic to LAX
Ben Shapiro 20 Nov 2012

Ready to fly out of Los Angeles today to get to your family before Thanksgiving? Not so fast. Los Angeles’ labor unions have decided to protest on Thanksgiving Eve – one of the busiest travel days of the year – to snarl traffic around Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

President Obama’s favorite union, the Service Employees International Union, is spearheading the obnoxious effort; it’s supposed to last from 11 a.m to 4 p.m., virtually the entire day. The LAPD says that travellers should arrive 90 minutes earlier than usual. LAX already advises people to arrive two hours in advance.
 
What exactly is SEIU protesting for? They say that an airport contract is breaking the city law on living wages – which, of course, is nonsense, since that would be prosecutable. They also say that the contractor has eliminated “affordable healthcare” for over 400 workers. Which is, again, bull. After all, can’t the SEIU just rely on Obamacare?
...
Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole ; He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee. - Job 5