Friday, July 13, 2012

City Clerk Julie Folcik Resigns

It is with a heavy heart that I report to you today that my friend, Costa Mesa City Clerk Julie Folcik, tendered her voluntary resignation today, effective today - Friday the 13th.


At no time during the three months since CEO Tom Hatch placed her on paid administrative leave in the wake of the City having missed the filing deadline for Jim Righeimer's Charter did she ever discuss the circumstances of that event with me.  Through it all she maintained  professional composure and a positive attitude.


In a private message to me this afternoon Julie expressed sadness for leaving the position she's held for more than a decade and that she's grateful to all her friends at City Hall for their kindness, support and encouragement during her tenure.  She's shown above with her former co-worker, Christine Cordon.


She gave me no indication what her future plans might be.  I certainly want to wish her well.

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Blogger Joe said...

If only Righeimer, instead of Julie Folcik, was the one leaving.

7/13/2012 07:32:00 PM  
Anonymous allthebest2U said...

Julie sure was, and, is, a nice lady. Her dogs are great too. Unfortunately she started having trouble doing her job, first the minutes and then somehow made a HUGE mistake that looks like it could have been on purpose. How can you miss that deadline ? Either incompetence or on purpose, both are very bad. We wish her the best of luck in her future because despite her shortcomings in job performance she is a wonderful lady. Wonder what the settlement was?

7/13/2012 08:40:00 PM  
Anonymous Reforms are good this council is bad. said...

Julie is a terrific person. I believe the mistake that was made was not done with bad intentions as Righeimer himself stated at a council meeting. But then they decided to trample her. It was very sad and cowardly what this council and Hatch's executive office did to this incredible human being. The next city or company to land her will be very fortunate.

7/13/2012 08:44:00 PM  
Blogger just wondering... said...

Amen to that!

7/13/2012 08:45:00 PM  
Anonymous Barry said...

Thanks Foley and John Stephens. Cost us a great City Clerk. They are such morons.

7/13/2012 08:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Sporfza likes playing warrior with Johnny said...

Ha! So this Moorlach guy, who that spinster Spforza from the register calls a Pension Warrior, could opt out of his pension which is 2.7 @ 55. Yet they criticize and demonize general city employees every chance the get for their 2.5 @ 55.

And he gets a 401K too! Holy Pension Batman!!!

But wait it gets better. Seems ole Johnny Warrior doesn't pay anything. Not his share, the employee share, nor the employer share. Your general city employee is paying about 9 percent of their own salary towards their pension.

Now how does Johnny the pension warrior (they should change him from warrior to his hypocritical arrogance) qualify this...Continued Moorlach: “(P)lease recognize a few things. One, I receive the same compensation package as every executive manager in the county. Two, although I do receive a 401(a) plan, it is in lieu of unused sick leave and vacation time, which everyone in the county receives except for elected officials. I defy union leadership to find anyone in the county’s workforce with less sick time used over the past seventeen years than me. As for unused vacation time, don’t even get me started. Three, it was my choice to pursue the role of county supervisor, but it does come with a high personal cost. Over these eight years, I will be receiving a quarter-of-a-million dollars less in wages than I would have earned if I had remained county treasurer-tax collector. Consequently, I would caution union leadership about how they discuss the sacrifices I have made in service to Orange County taxpayers.”

Moorlach was on the board of the Orange County Employees Retirement System (OCERS) for 12 years, and has been advocating reform for at least as long. “As a participant of OCERS, doesn’t this make me all the more qualified to comment on the county’s pension issues? I am not an outsider trying to tear down walls. I am an insider in utter fear of the future viability of my pension, and the pension of my coworkers,

7/13/2012 09:31:00 PM  
Blogger Dennis Ashendorf said...

Mr. Moorlach has been forthright about pensions for the almost two decades I've followed him. Your words attempt to brand him a hypocrite. He is certainly not.

He has taken pay cuts to do his current job and I believe term limits will apply. Mr. Moorlach is not a person laying low waiting for a pension.

Suggesting that people not accept what is legally theirs is a child's argument. Thoughtful liberals like Judge Learned Hand dismissed them decades ago.

Similarly, I think Prop 13 is morally wrong, but I'm not paying more property taxes voluntarily, but I would if it were the law. I'm not a hypocrite.

Your comment doesn't belong in this topic. Refrain from attacking others when it is inappropriate and it is in this case.

7/13/2012 10:33:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Thanks for that, Dennis. Whether one agrees with you about John or not, that discussion is inappropriate on this thread. I was waiting to see who would step up.. it was you.

7/13/2012 10:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Sporfza likes playing warrior with Johnny said...

I totally disagree with Geoff and Dennis.

Julie Folcik's loss of her job happened because of this council and the OCGOP's reckless actions to rush and to use Costa Mesa as a petri dish for pension reform and a charter.

Did you read Colin McCarthy's latest piece? Blending the charter with employees pensions.

I agree we need some pension reforms and I also believe Moorlach is a HUGE hypocrite. He may have been way in front on the pension talk and it's dangers and that makes him even more of a hypoctrite. The way he demonizes those who also accept their pensions and tries to raise anbger toward them amongst the taxpayers to which we all are.

City employees that get attack weekly through the register watchdog often based on Moorlachs hypocrisy also took cuts, had one of their own committ suicide, are paying more of their pensions and as stated Moorlach doesn't pay any toward his. SO excuse me for not crying over Moorlach's sacrifices.

But what really irked me was his defense of his pension and how he feels his sacrifices justify his outrageous pension. Yet does he give the same considerations back to those he attacks. How about those Fire and Police who risk their lives.

I want some pension reforms but I believe hypocrites like Moorlach and clowns like McCarthy hurt that effort.

Lastly, nobody suggested Moorlach opt out. What was suggested is maybe you shouldn't demonize and try to raise anger towards those whose pensions are a lot less than yours.

So I feel the topic is appropriate because had the pension and charter debate not been handled the way they were Julie Folcik would still be going to city hall 5 days a week and serving the citizens well.

7/13/2012 11:46:00 PM  
Anonymous puppetroll2chins said...

Moorlach and others get the pension they earned under the rules at the time. For Moorlach to point out that the system is unsustainable is hardly demonizing or attacking the individual worker. The whacko left keeps this big lie about demonizing the worker going. That's fine, the more publicity about pensions the better. Don't hate the player, hate the game.

7/14/2012 06:40:00 AM  
Anonymous doyourjob said...

Sporfzasez:"had the pension and charter debate not been handled the way they were...". So Julie didn't like the debate and did not hit the "send" button on her computer? That's your excuse for her not doing her job? In fact, it was one of the more important things that she had to do during her career here. The real reason would be great to know but it is hard to believe she was not aware of the deadline. What does that at least "suggest"?

7/14/2012 06:49:00 AM  
Anonymous Tom Egan (man of few words, sometimes) said...

To “allthebest2U:”

You wrote “ … somehow made a HUGE mistake that looks like it could have been on purpose. How can you miss that deadline ? Either incompetence or on purpose, both are very bad”

There’s another possibility, actually a strong one in my opinion. It’s that Righeimer was trying to game the system so he could look at the ballot arguments of his opponents and tweak his own to get an advantage. But in so doing, he tripped over a cast-in-concrete state law. (Isn’t it interesting that Righeimer keeps on tripping over civic facts of life? It’s no wonder he wants a charter so he can make up the rules as he goes.)

This calls for a reprise of the supporting arguments in a short ;-) little piece I contributed to this blog back on March 28, 7:57 pm, City Clerk Placed on Administrative Leave! Here it is ...

Could it be that Ms. Folcik was simply doing as she was told by micromanager Jim Righeimer? The last 15 months have demonstrated that Righeimer has definite ideas about how things should be run and that he wants things done HIS way (or the highway)! Typical for a WDD (Wheeler Dealer Developer).

I can easily imagine that he wanted to game the system by peeking at the “Against” arguments after they were submitted to the City Clerk so he could tweak his “For” arguments. Being a WDD, he would be savvy enough to know there would be no time pressure on him because City Clerks are allowed to submit ballot arguments (but not resolutions) to the ROV on the next business day.

What might have tripped up Mr. Too-clever-by-half Righeimer – remember he’s a WDD – is that in his zeal to stick it to the people against his charter, he might have overlooked one tiny little detail: THE RESOLUTION BY THE CITY HAD TO BE TO THE ROV BY THE DEADLINE, 5 PM FRIDAY.

It’s obvious why the deadline is, well, a line beyond which you are dead: California statute decides when resolutions shall be submitted. The ROV has no latitude. Further, city resolutions are typically adopted days and even months before the submittal deadline, so why wait for the last minute? For example, the tiny city of Auburn (east of Sacramento) adopted its charter resolution last September for this same June 2012 election.

It’s the arguments, NOT the resolution, that are allowed to be filed the next business day.

But would Righeimer be so headstrong that he would run right over professional city clerk Julie Folcik?

Remember the previous city attorney Kimberly Hall Barlow? The Pot Stirrer’s first reaction to the news of her departure was, “Uh-Oh! I wonder what she knows that we don't that would cause her to bail out just as a new municipal administration is getting started?” (

Subsequent events suggest that Barlow left because she wouldn’t approve of the demand by Righeimer (supported by Monahan and Bever) to issue layoff notices RIGHT NOW, instead of waiting until studies had been done to see which, if any, layoffs were prudent. She, being an experienced city attorney (and smart: she graduated third in her law school class at UCLA) would have researched the employee agreements and found TROUBLE with Righeimer’s Fire, Aim, Ready approach. I can imagine their final confrontation with Righeimer confidently saying: “It’s my way or the highway.”

Exit Barlow. Enter Tom Duarte. I don’t remember hearing him disagreeing with anything except when he told Monahan to let Terry Koken continue his rhyming comments during public comments last July 19.

Continued next, due to space limitations…

7/14/2012 12:08:00 PM  
Anonymous Tom Egan (man of few words, sometimes) said...

Continuation from previous comment

While we’re at it, remember how the professional opinions of interim Police Chief Steve Stavely and consultants were summarily ignored by Righeimer/Monahan/Bever? Stavely was so incensed at the airy dismissal of his professional recommendations that he quit immediately, blasting the council as “incompetent, unskilled and unethical.”

Was he naïve? A guy who had been a police chief for over 29 years with three cities? Hardly. Then why? He explained, "I've been doing this for a very long time and I can read a budget. I am unable to sit there and accept checks for looking pretty. I can't do it. If we can't move the organization forward, that's the way it is."

With this history, the odds are that WDD Righeimer shot himself in the foot trying to game this deadline. Folcik is just the scapegoat so he can maybe keep his increasingly leaky political boat afloat.

It’s a reasonable guess that Folcik is up there with Barlow and Stavely in the pantheon of talented professionals who have been trashed by Righeimer/Monahan/Bever.

7/14/2012 12:12:00 PM  
Anonymous allthebest2U said...

Egan, maybe you are right about Righeimer and maybe I am right about Folcik. We will never know. If it was Riggy, he was stupid to try to get a look at such weak arguments against the charter but perhaps he gave them too much respect and thought they would write better prose.
Stavely is nuts so anything quoting him is an instant LOL on my part. Epic meltdown by a Democrat who was most likely going to be fired in a couple of hours. They replaced him same day so something was up. And you now have a contender for man of few words: Krupp. Never have finished one of his posts. Stavely? LOL.

7/14/2012 12:57:00 PM  
Anonymous Question said...


Please explain why you stated above "Moorlach and others get the pension they earned under the rules at the time." Yet, you continue to ask all current City employees to make concessions and take decreases. What's up with that? Are you applying different rules to different people? That would be a big no-no.

I agree, a change definitely needs to be made, but only on a GOING FORWARD basis. Why are you and the Council majority still attacking current employees who deserve to keep what was negotiated at their hiring? Isn't that the exact same situation as Moorlach.

As for your “Don't hate the player, hate the game” comment. We absolutely do hate the game! We all agree pension reform must be done however; it should only apply to new hires entering the municipal government field.

Look, what’s done is done. Like it or not, those contracts should be honored. Let’s stop fighting over the past and make sustainable changes going forward. What are you guys so afraid of? Can't you just be civilized human beings and work with the people who elected you?

7/14/2012 02:39:00 PM  
Anonymous Robin said...

I simply want to wish Julie the best. She was a great clerk, efficient and always professional, cheerful, helpful. The quality of her work was never an issue until it became convenient to cast blame.

It's just amazing how the slimers started spreading their poison after the missed deadline, trying to impugn her character. "Insider" sounding hints that went from innuendo, to mistruth, to out right lie. One thing about Julie, she never was and will never be a complainer, gossip, whiner, blamer or excuse maker. Those classless traits are outside her frame of reference.

Julie, if you read this, I wish you all the best. Your conduct as clerk and since you were put on leave has been nothing but professional. You continue to act with class and integrity. Add to all that grace in the face of adversity. I will miss you, and do sincerely wish you all the good things in life.

7/14/2012 04:20:00 PM  
Anonymous puppetroll2chins said...

I don't want different rules for different people as far as pensions. The average city worker has given a lot to help out. Police and Fire not so much. They talk like they will but they have "strings" attached to their incomplete public statements. In the private sector you also get what you were promised-to a point. That can change going forward from a point certain just as social security retirement age changed on some. How about current employees get their deal as of today,up to today, and all they have accrued BUT tomorrow we may change retirement age and /or benefits. This is best possible scenario for taxpayers, obviously not for workers. Most likely, all changes will apply just to new hires in a 2nd tier pension. That unfortunately will not be enough and the well may run dry for current employees funding. They may want to try to compromise a little more to keep it solvent and, again, it is public safety taking the bulk of $$$ and retiring earlier.
Robin, Julie missed the deadline is a truthful statement. If you are for responsible government you should be outraged at her performance but since it benefitted your group you are all gushy over her. Total opposite reaction from you if she had filed I bet. You say she will never be a complainer, gossip, whiner, blamer or excuse maker. Thus she does not fit the profile of the average public speaker at council and member of your group, the whiners, complainers, gossipers, false accusers and blamers

7/14/2012 08:01:00 PM  
Anonymous Terry Koken said...

Why in hell should anyone for responsible government be incensed that Julie Folcik missed the deadline? Her action was on a par with Horatius at the bridge, or the Dutch boy with his finger in the dike -- Accidental, maybe; COMMENDABLE, certainly. Whatever the reason, whether legal or not, regardless of her intentions and entirely aside from the pressures, positive or negative, at the time: her action struck a blow for government of the people, by the people, and for the people.

If it was unintentional, she won't get quite as much credit for it; if intentional, my take, we should erect a statue or other monument to her. Let me be quite clear in my position on this: It was a ballsy action, and has had a definitely salubrious effect on the governance of our fair city, and we'd be well off if we had just a few more like Julie Folcik. Personally, I await eagerly her story on the matter, though I realize there'll possibly never be one.

The founding fathers had enough faith in their cause to do a similar act, and John Hancock was the first to sign it.

7/16/2012 12:45:00 AM  
Anonymous puppetroll2chins said...

Koken, are you saying John Hancock was the first to deny the people the right to vote on something? because that is what Julie did.

7/16/2012 06:59:00 AM  
Anonymous Mary Ann O'Connell said...

"Anonymous Barry said...

Thanks Foley and John Stephens. Cost us a great City Clerk. They are such morons."

In what way could Stephens and Foley be responsible? Are you saying that, had the court sided with the city, Julie would have been spared? How telling of this council. How cruel.

What I see is that a Council that makes mistakes on a daily basis couldn't tolerate a respected professional who made one that, in the end and according to the judge, did nothing more than make the boys look bad. The charter lives to be voted on.

All humans make mistakes every day. The good ones just hope they don't make the same ones over and over. Julie, you are one of the good ones and Councilmen, you are repeat offenders.

Thank you, Julie, for your years of service.

7/16/2012 11:02:00 AM  

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