Only one surprise as Yorba Linda's elected boards select officers to serve one-year terms during 2016
Only one surprise surfaced during the annual selections of officers to lead the locally elected governing boards with jurisdiction in Yorba Linda.
Generally, City Council members, water district directors and school trustees rotate each of their colleagues through the boards' leadership positions for one-year terms, demurring just when political gamesmanship interferes with the traditional, orderly process.
The exceptions have occurred mostly in the council's yearly selection of a mayor and mayor pro tem, when members on the short side of 3-2 and 4-1 voting alignments are, on occasion, pettishly excluded from the largely ceremonial positions.
However, the surprise this year came in the Yorba Linda Water District, as unanimous votes extended the terms of President Ric Collett and Vice President Mike Beverage for a second year.
The district has rotated the positions each year since directors were first elected by the public in 1959, but Beverage, next in line to be president, suggested Collett serve another year “due to the continued drought and other events which had occurred during the previous year,” meeting minutes stated.
Interestingly, the seats now held by Beverage and Collett are the two scheduled for the November ballot. Beverage, a single-term councilman in the 1980s, was first elected in 1992, and Collett's initial term began in 2004. They faced no opposition in the 2012 election.
Another task for directors is to “consider” the board member “compensation rate,” an annual agenda item. Again this year, directors – as they have since 2003, when they raised the per-meeting stipend to $150 for up to 10 meetings per month – wisely declined an increase.
State law allows the directors to raise their pay 5 percent each year, which could have led to a $269.38 per-meeting paycheck starting this year. However, the review didn't consider medical, dental and vision benefits that currently cost from $8,963 to $15,124 yearly per participant.
Placentia-Yorba Linda school trustees followed their rotation policy by elevating Judi Carmona to the presidency, replacing Eric Padget, with Karin Freeman named vice president and Carol Downey clerk. Seats now held by Carmona, Downey and Padget are scheduled for the Nov. 8 ballot.
Trustees also review board compensation as a regular agenda item each year, but in a 5-0 vote this time, they boosted their $750 monthly pay the state-allowed 5 percent to $787.50, a bit behind the 5.5 percent employee raises granted earlier for the current fiscal year.
Council's occasionally volatile selection process went smoothly this round, with unanimous votes selecting Tom Lindsey mayor and Peggy Huang mayor pro tem. Seats held by Gene Hernandez, Mark Schwing and Craig Young will be on November ballot.
Hernandez continues as the city's rep at the Fire Authority, Huang at Vector Control and Young at the toll roads agency, with $100-$120 per-meeting pay.