Best and Worst of 2013 - Part 3 (City Staff)

Dr. Jim Gardner
Dr. Jim Gardner

We started with the Best and Worst Council Moments, then the Best and Worst Commission/Committee Moments, so it’s time for the City Employees. Tomorrow we’ll finish up with the Citizen Awards.



STEPHANIE SMITH (and her staff) – For her excellent work getting website transparency in shape and for dealing with all the extra meetings.

HONORABLE MENTION - RON RIVERA (and his staff) – For his excellent work year after year on the Parade Committee.



BOB DUNEK – This extremely highly paid City Manager routinely signs off on staff reports that have all the sophistication of freshman college reports.

DISHONORABLE MENTION - GARY MAGILL – The man responsible for unsuccessfully heading up the search for a dog park, a plan for Village Pond Park, and vested with the responsibility for the Lake Forest Community Foundation which does nothing.


WARRANT REGISTER – Compared to all the other cities in Southern California, our Warrant Register is the most comprehensive and detailed. Too bad it consistently reports that we spend very little of our $35,000,000 annual budget on people and businesses in the City, but that’s not the fault of the report.



TRAFFIC COMMITTEE – Authored by City Manager (Dunek), Public Works Director (Tom Wheeler), and a traffic consultant (Doug Anderson), these three people are paid collectively more than $1,000,000 per year, yet this report contained so many errors it required four separate articles to summarize them.


PLANNING COMMISSION - Easing some of the rules regulating the use of signs and banners.

HONORABLE MENTION - ADAM NICK - Proactively reaching out to a Lake Forest business forced to relocate, and trying to get them to stay in the City.



CITY COUNCIL - Spending less than 2% of our $35,000,000 annual budget on people and businesses in Lake Forest - a new all-time low. Then refusing to set up a Committee to correct this problem.

DISHONORABLE MENTION - DWIGHT ROBINSON - Organizing a workshop to help businesses get more contracts with the City, then more than 80% of the businesses attending were not from Lake Forest.

Tomorrow we give out the Citizen awards.


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Homer January 05, 2014 at 08:07 PM
Best report submitted to the City Council: Duck Pond....... Ducks? Yes, there are ducks. Ducks like to fly. Ducks like to eat. Ducks poop. If we plant trees, maybe the ducks will not land here. Ducks like to land where they eat. Ducks can fly around trees. Ducks like to fly to other places. How can we get rid of the ducks? We do not know. End of report.
Jim Gardner January 05, 2014 at 08:29 PM
Or how did you like - "We will drain the pond for a few months and the ducks won't like that. When we finally fill it up again, the ducks won't come back because they'll be so upset we drained it in the first place they won't want to be disappointed again."
Doug Ward January 06, 2014 at 10:03 PM
Bulldoze duck poop park and make it the dog park. Two birds with one stone (pun intended).


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