UNFORGOTTEN… Due to the large spawns and relatively short life spans of cephalopods, Squid’s family tree is quite extensive, requiring meticulous records. The task of documenting who came before should be a lot easier for humans – or so Squid thought.
YYYYTThis latest discovery of Homo sapiens’ incompetence started with a rumor that Clint Eastwood used to offer members of Monterey County’s Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors bit parts in his movies. Squid’s colleague thought that finding out which, if any, public officials from Monterey County history acted in an Eastwood movie should be simple enough. In theory, you take a list of names going back to, say, 1980, plug each one into IMDB and see if you get any hits. In reality, it’s not so simple.
First, no such list of public officials can be found online, not on the webpages of the county clerk nor the county Elections Department. (It might be possible to build up a list of supervisors by compiling election results cycle by cycle.) So Squid’s colleague started emailing various county employees – because they must have it written down somewhere. Wrong. After three weeks of looking, the county has been able to provide the list of past supervisors for only two districts, and nothing from the planning commission.
It looks like the county’s record-keeping of past decision-makers is as empty as Eastwood’s empty chair at the 2012 GOP convention.
SHOW ME THE MONEY… Squid’s life depends on water, and Squid knows water is equally important to humans, even though in Monterey County, they have the propensity to commoditize it and politicize it.
Squid was mulling this as former Del Rey Oaks City Manager Daniel Dawson appeared in Monterey County Superior Court (via webcam, which he declined to turn on) for a hearing on how much money he has to pay back following his felony conflict-of-interest conviction in a case involving water. Just weeks after Dawson resigned as city manager in January 2017, he applied with the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District to transfer water credits from city-owned property to a residential lot he owned, and identified himself on that application as city manager. In all, the city wants Dawson to pay $291,364.13 in restitution.
The restitution hearing included defense attorney Michael Lawrence giving Judge Andrew Liu a primer on water – for example, how many gallons of water are in an acre-foot. “Sounds like you’re calling me stupid right now,” the judge said, as he mulled whether he could take judicial notice on how many gallons are in an acre-foot. (He was kidding, natch.) Liu is set to issue his restitution order on Jan. 22, and it’s likely Dawson will appear via webcam again, minus the camera part (again) and still rocking the screen name “DanDaMan.”