Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Update On Tuesday's Council Meeting

Last night's Costa Mesa City Council meeting, which I mentioned in my previous entry, can be viewed in its entirety via streaming video HERE. I've extracted a few clips from that meeting to save you just a little time looking for them.

Last night was very disturbing,
as I mentioned before. Not only did it become clear that the gloves are off as far as Jim Righeimer and Steve Mensinger are concerned, but that part time, part time councilman Eric Bever is prepared to join the effort to turn our city into a dictatorship.


Righeimer and Mensinger demonstrated their disdain for those residents who take the time to study issues and then step to the speaker's podium to present their views to the council - a right guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States. It is one of the great ironies from last night's meeting that Mensinger griped about too few residents getting involved in municipal business, then chides and dismisses those who do.

At the very end of the meeting Bever requested CEO Tom Hatch to have staff research what other cities do on the subject of just who can place an item on the agenda of council meetings. His meaning was absolutely transparent - he's looking for a way to keep Wendy Leece from being able to serve those thousands of people who voted for her by requiring more than one member to sign off on items to be considered by the council. That initiative, along with the obvious willingness of Mayor Gary Monahan to stifle free speech and similar indications from Righeimer and Mensinger, tell us that this city is on the verge of being governed by a junta.

Retired Planning Department executive Perry Valantine asked the council about the rumor around town about the city working with the Costa Mesa Sanitary District to take over the city's street sweeping operations. Today we have had confirmed that talks are, indeed, underway with the Sanitary District to do just that. In fact, it is my understanding that those conversations - quite heated at times - took place yesterday afternoon. So, when Monahan said no such effort was underway he was either lying or is so out of the loop that he didn't know. It is our understanding that Righeimer was at the meeting in question.

This is a way for Rig
heimer and his cronies to circumvent the injunction - by contracting with another public agency to perform services in the city. However, the Sanitary District has no street sweepers and, it is our understanding, Costa Mesa's equipment no longer meets environmental quality standards, but are grandfathered in. If another entity takes over this operation it will have to purchase all new, compressed natural gas equipment to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars. The Sanitary District would very likely outsource this job itself - maybe to CR&R, their contract waste hauler. This, of course, violates the spirit of the injunction. Remember me mentioning that you can't trust these guys? This is precisely why.

Here are a few links for your viewing pleasure. As mentioned some time ago, viewing these slices of the city streaming video feed may require the downloading of Microsoft Silverlight software. It's free and takes up almost no space on your computer. If you have trouble downloading and/or viewing these clips, go the Microsoft site and download the software.


This clip i
s the entire presentation by soft-spoken resident Tamar Goldman - the one I quoted most of verbatim in the last entry. I thought you should see it for yourself.

This clip is the poignant presentation to the City Council by Terry Koken, the resident that Monahan tried to stifle at the last meeting. As you'll see, he is so angry at one point that he can almost not speak

This clip is of Perry Valantine as he asks about the apparent conflict of interest Steve Mensinger has with the Pop Warner issue. As previously mentioned, Mensinger was the ramrod for this issue last night, even though he is no longer the president of the organization. Clearly, he was in charge - apparently part of his "mentoring program" for the new president, Chris Cox. You'll hear contract City Attorney Tom Duarte tell him that Mensinger has no conflict, nor does Righeimer. Listen VERY closely at the very end of the clip and you'll hear Mensinger mutter "what connections" into his open microphone.

In this very short clip you'll hear Righeimer rip into Costa Mesa City Employee's Association President Helen Nenedal at the beginning of a much longer, vitriolic tirade

In this final clip you'll hear Mensinger tell the world that he's not going to forget what he feels is an inappropriate inclusion of student athletes in the political battles. Of course, playing fast and loose with the truth, he fails to mention during his rant that it was he and Righeimer who brought those young men into the battle last year during the campaign and who have continued to use them as pawn in their little war ever since. He should be directing that hostility inward.


Our city is in deep trouble
with these men in charge. They have cut public safety to the bone and beyond and their creation of a hostile workplace has chased many - now almost too many to count - wonderful employees away to other jurisdictions. We're losing experienced police officers like someone left the tap open - men and women in whom the City had invested many years of training. Former Chief Steve Staveley had it exactly right when, in the text of his letter to the men and women of the CMPD the day he left, he wrote of the majority on the City Council: "It is safe to say that the council majority – does not know more about the subject of leadership, or leading police departments or serving as an elected than do I – and yet they do not listen, they do not understand and continue to blunder along in complete ignorance and incompetence." In that same letter he later wrote: "I have never, however, seen a council such as this one. They lack skill, training, education, knowledge, they fail to study (or at least learn). The majority either lies or are so lacking in the necessary skills that they actually believe the junk they say. They act as if they are owners of the business that is the municipal government of the City of Costa Mesa, but they are not, they are merely trustees of these public assets both human and physical and they fail in that role completely. They are in my opinion incompetent, unskilled and unethical." Those last three words ring like church bells as we watch this team destroy our proud city.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,


Blogger Chas said...

Thank you so much for "A Bubbling Cauldron" which really informs those of us who can't for one reason or another, attend council meetings but want to know what's really going on.
A wonderful service to our community.

Charles Richmond

8/03/2011 06:14:00 PM  
Anonymous A Heavy Heart said...

I feel like these men are full of hatred towards anyone who does not believe how they believe, but I don't believe that they even care. They could give a "you know what" what people think about them. Hard hearts and no souls. What I think is the funniest part is they claim to be Christians, but I see no actions that show they are "Christ" like.

They can't seem to get it through their pompous heads that if they had presented their agenda with respect and knowledge, and treated their critics like gentlemen and showed them how they could make the city better, they would have been much more successful. But sadly, they don't apply the "Golden Rule" to their lives...or do they...?

I personally know one of these men, and I can guarantee you that he will never be thought of as a friend to me ever again, and any ounce of respect or friendship that I once had for him has ceased to exist. I feel very sad about that 'cause I actually used to respect him. But it's not okay to treat people with scorn and contempt...IT'S NOT OKAY!

Now, for all of you City Council "minions", I know you are going to post that they are being treated that way by others. This is now where the Golden Rule is being applied to their lives...they ARE treating people the way that they want to be treated. If they wanted to be treated respectfully, then they should treat others the same way. The way they treat their favorite punching-bag, Wendy Leece, is a prime example of their behavior. But for them, I guess being a proper gentleman, especially towards a woman, doesn't apply to Wendy.

THE ONLY PEOPLE THAT THEY TREAT RESPECTFULLY ARE THE ONES THAT AGREE WITH THEM. If you disagree with them at all, don't expect them to listen, and don't expect them to show you any respect, you will only be treated with disdain.

8/03/2011 06:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Mike 1 said...

+1, Heavy Heat!

8/03/2011 06:48:00 PM  
Anonymous Mike 1 said...


8/03/2011 08:04:00 PM  
Anonymous OCLonghair said...

A Big Heart:

Amen, Amen, and again Amen.

8/03/2011 08:30:00 PM  
Anonymous gaz said...

This stuff makes me feel sick. Will we elect better people next time? Will there still be a Costa Mesa left worth living in?

8/03/2011 08:52:00 PM  
Blogger Tina Wilcox Gold said...

It's sad to be embarrassed by where we live. I appreciate everyone who speaks out against the takeover and corruption of Costa Mesa. It is beginning to sound like a banana republic.

I intend to support candidates who can stand with Ms. Leece and demand transparency. And at the very least respect those who vote in elections and support city employees.

We need a really bright light to shine on these guys. Then hopefully get back to real governance.

8/03/2011 09:04:00 PM  
Anonymous Alex said...

You say you want a revolution, Well you know, we just need to recall Righeimer instead.

8/03/2011 10:28:00 PM  
Blogger Joe said...

When you watch the vids from last night's meeting, and hear Riggy go off while channeling Truman Capote, or listen to Menssy lecture citizens in the same tone his frustrated childhood caretakers must have used, the thought has to cross your mind that these dolts, clever though they are, didn't come up with this or any other philosophy themselves.

Of course you're right. The Costa Mesa extremists are getting their plays from the National Agenda.

See if this doesn't sound familiar:

8/03/2011 10:52:00 PM  
Blogger feral390 said...

If you happen to be a republican and don't like what's happening here you can send a very strong message by simply changing your party affiliation to independent or decline to state or democrat or whatever. I have done this, my 80 yr old mother has as well.

8/04/2011 06:03:00 AM  
Blogger Gericault said...

I read this article the other day. The timeline is interesting in that these mandates were sent out against public sector workers all at the same time. Wisconsin, New Jersey, State and federal levels.
Righeimer was one of the authors of the original "Paycheck Protection Act", and even testified before congress, about busting unions. I'm sure he got some push from his old roomate Dana Rohrbacher.
Now , in microcosm on a city council, he starts using the exact same playbook as the rest of the Rethuglicans to attack workers and benefit private corporations at the taxpayers expense, all in the guise of reform.
Have we seen any cost saving studies yet? It's been five months since the layoff notices went out....

8/04/2011 07:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Can't Sign Recall Petition said...

I am not going to sign any Recall Petition. The recent ads have me really concerned about identity theft. If we have the issue of identity theft, how are we going to get a Recall? Can someone please help? These ads have me very nervous. Thank you

8/04/2011 08:02:00 AM  
Anonymous Doomsday said...

I thought is was really interesting when he personally attacked Helen. Saying the city could not afford "her" workers and complained how the association lawsuits are costing the city so much in legal fees. You could see the frustration in his voice. Gee Mr. Righeimer, the association would not have to file the lawsuits if the city would follow the laws that are in place. Jones and Meyer are probably laughing all the way to the bank knowing how much money they will be getting from Costa Mesa taxpayers.

8/04/2011 08:32:00 AM  
Anonymous unanimous said...

Gericault thinks there is no debt problem in any city or state apparently. The world stock markets disagree with her. Most every city is experiencing financial difficulty and she can't see it, being so blinded by rage. The OCGOP thankfully is on this and will help save what we have left. Righeimer's oratory was the best I have seen in years, you should post the whole thing. Or anyone can go to city website and start watching at 2:19 of meeting. What is there to disagree with in his comments? Beautiful.

8/04/2011 08:37:00 AM  
Anonymous Pissed at CM Council said...

looks like it didn't take long for pay back. Yesterday City Workers where told that their hours will be changed in one month from their 4, 12 hour to 5, 8 hour. For no other reason then "thats how other companies are ran". Little things like this just to mess with people is just retarted and now park bathrooms wont be open till 8am or later. So my poor bladder will suffer on my morning walks. such BS!

8/04/2011 10:14:00 AM  
Anonymous OCLonghair said...

Can't Sign:

Seeing that you used your computer to respond to Geoff’s post… I will take a leap and assume you visit a number of other sites during your day. By just surfing the net for a few hours a day, you have given out more personal information than you are required to give when filling out any Local, State or Federal petition. Also, only those whom have previously registered to vote are allowed to sign any petition.

The information required when signing a petition will/should be no more than given when registering to vote.

The caution that has been making headline over the past few weeks is to warn voters about groups of people standing in front of Target, walking around shopping malls or approaching you at a public event. You should only sign a petition from a registered or licensed solicitor. They should have an ID badge (some districts require the collector’s photo) with the group’s, organization’s or company’s information clearly displayed while collecting signatures.

NOW, if you are here in an attempt to place fear in the minds of or scare off potential recall signers... then shame on you.

8/04/2011 10:50:00 AM  
Anonymous Unions creatigng fear over signatures said...

OCLonghair, you do realize that all those commercials, creating fear, are being funded by the Unions? Unions do not want people signing signatures because there are attempts being made to reign Unions in.

So, is it reasonable logic to say shame on Unions?

8/04/2011 11:22:00 AM  
Anonymous Everyone ... Back to Work! said...

Does this mean Billy Folsom has to change oil on Friday to collect his $100,000 a year?

8/04/2011 11:23:00 AM  
Anonymous OCLonghair said...


Speaking for me and possibly a few others whom frequent this blog, love reading the thoroughly researched, insightful and extremely entertaining comments you post.

I offer a few suggestions:

1. When someone posts using various names anonymously, you may consider not assuming the gender of that person. I have never considered which way you swing and I promise not to do so in the future.
2. Your love and adoration for the newest members to our City Council and your total allegiance to the OCGOP is commendable. I would, however, caution you to which wagon you hitch your elephant. Many of us (yes… me included) “Ronny Republicans” are getting tired of the BS your heroes are perpetuating. There are many of us whom have supported (financially) the GOP, in my case for the past 40 years, and have begun or have already pulled that support; with numbers growing daily. As a staunch Republican, which you make obvious in your posts, you should know it’s always about the number$.
3. As a final suggestion, you may consider taking an online writing course. As talented and eloquent your posts have been in the past; think what they would look like if you were educated… in writing… not to assume you are not an educated person. This, or get yourself a writing program with better grammar and spell check and a good thesaurus.

Always with love... TDG

8/04/2011 12:30:00 PM  
Anonymous OCLonghair said...

Pissed on... hold your water:

You may consider investigating a law past while Gov Moonbeam was our AG. This law as I understand it, restricts businesses to 8 hour days, starting overtime with the ninth our; not allowing allowing a 10 hour days.

The CEO (a true CEO)of Carl Karcher Inter., gave a great interview to KFI about this exact issue. He told the two hosts, "That due to this law he was made to fire a store manager (one who’s numbers were in the to 2%) because he would clock out at 8 hours and stay working during a busy shift change.” He went on to say,"This law was enacted because of heavy pressure by a group of California trade Unions.”

As much as I empathize with your bladder, you can thank the Unions for this one.

8/04/2011 12:53:00 PM  
Anonymous OCLonghair said...


You query as to my knowledge from whence cometh the “Funding for Fear”? (great name for a Liberal non-profit)

I, being an ‘A’ student at NB-CM University of the West; under the tutelage of the Master Stirrer, am quite aware of which you speak. (OK… enough of the BS)

I would suggest that these “Fear” tactics are not exclusive to today’s Unions, but goes way back to Clinton/Gore 1. You may recall during their first campaign and throughout their first term they created faults scenarios of doom and gloom in the attempt to discredit all that Ron Reagan and Bush Sr. accomplished over their 12 years in office. The lie of “What should be down is up and what should be up is down.” still makes me ill whenever I think about it.

The comment from Can’t Sign asked for help to lessen those fears. I made an attempt to do just that; however lame the attempt… thanks for asking though.

8/04/2011 01:43:00 PM  
Anonymous I.M. Gericult - do as I say, not as I do said...

What if I ran for an Elected position next year. Gericult did not like me and campaigned against me. Over time he had a brick thrown through his windshield and his car painted.

Then my campaign signs went missing and there was a rumor that girls in skirts were removing signs.

So I sent an armed investigator over to his house to ask his young daughter about the signs.

Work with me. Do you think Gericult would be singing a different tune? Do you think he would come here and say “what’s the big deal?”.

… me neither!

If Geoff West had any friends or young kids, I would have use Geoff as the example.

8/04/2011 01:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Mike 1 said...

Was it ever actually confirmed (or even reported for that matter) that the PI in question was armed, or are council supporters yet again perpetuation a myth/falsehood, which is par for the course for them? Did I miss something?

I don't quite see why someone would be armed to interview a bunch of high school football players, unless they were suffereing Roid Rage (the players, that is). I interviewed a few HS athletes back in my days as a sportswriter, and a pad and pen typically sufficed, even in the rougher neighborhoods.

8/04/2011 03:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Max said...

Mike 1, That's a good point. Some PI's might carry a gun with them. However, it would probably be concealed whether it was permitted or not. Who saw the gun?

Implying the PI had a gun without any evidence would be like implying Steve Mensinger carries a gun to council meetings based on public knowledge that he seems to like guns and hunting.

I suppose our council would just assume everyone think it was Rambo doing the questioning with a belt fed 50 caliber.

8/04/2011 04:43:00 PM  
Blogger just wondering... said...

Yes, we need to get rid of these fools...and the one with the wig too.

8/04/2011 06:45:00 PM  
Blogger just wondering... said...

Was it ever actually confirmed that they talked to any kids at all?

8/04/2011 06:47:00 PM  
Blogger valan2 said...

It's interesting that Robin Mensinger is listed as Fundraising/Scholarship Coordinator of Costa Mesa Pop Warner football on the Pop Warner web site:

Her husband, City Councilman Steve Mensinger, just voted to give $10,000 of City money to Pop Warner. I believe Steve is also a - or an immediate past - official of Costa Mesa Pop Warner Football. Yet, the City Attorney said there's no conflict in his voting on the issue.

Supporting youth sports is great, but using your official position to give taxpayers' money to them is not.

8/04/2011 10:54:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

valan2, I also thought it was curious when, after that very smart fella asked the question, Duarte said there is no conflict with Mensinger.

It seemed to me that we were just handing him ten grand since he gloated to Helen Nenedal that he'd get kids scholarships if their folks couldn't afford it. And, his wife, as you indicated, is the scholarship person for Pop Warner. Duarte may think it's not a conflict just because Mensinger didn't put the money in his wallet, but he and his wife obviously will spend it.

8/04/2011 11:30:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Mr. Richmond,
Sorry for the very tardy response to your very nice compliment. I do what I can and hope good folks like you will also participate.

8/04/2011 11:32:00 PM  
Anonymous Dazed and Confused said...

If a certain appointed-council-member's current tax- returns reveal numerous, substantial qualified tax- deductible-donations receipts, to a qualified charitable-organization: Pop Warner Football, (i.e. qualified monetary, "in-kind", &/or volunteer mileage donations) then I'm inquired to ask: So, just how is CC member Mesinger not directly benefitting from his relationship, or his wife's (PW Board Member) "joint-filing spouse's" relationship not a serious conflict of interest?

I'm really confused why Mr. Duarte did not advise him to politely recuse himself from discussing & voting on the $10k debt-payment item.

He still would've achieved a 3-1 vote to pay off the league's debt without continuously showcasing what a habitual POMPOUS JACKA$$ that he is at each & every CC meeting!

8/04/2011 11:35:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Dazed and Confused,
I believe that four-legged fella you mention stated, with great arrogant gusto, that he'd contributed a half-million worth of time and energy to Pop Warner.

This was around the time he was telling the audience of his trip to Modesto where he spoke to the Rotary Club and ferreted out the information that NOBODY in the room knew what employees were being paid. Wow! I'm sure they were happy to have the prodigal son return to tell them what a bunch of saps they are.

8/04/2011 11:52:00 PM  
Anonymous why does West give Genis a pass? said...

I saw the Huntington Beach Council tape. What I saw was Sandy Genus threatening the HB Council not to get involved.

Imagine if one of the people Geoff hates went over and did that.

8/05/2011 07:42:00 AM  
Blogger Joe said...

Re Menssy:

"..he was telling the audience of his trip to Modesto where he spoke ...the prodigal son return to tell them what a bunch of saps they are.."

Saps? THEY got rid of him! As a kid he probably thought "cowpoke" was a verb..

8/05/2011 07:46:00 AM  
Anonymous Mary Ann O'Connell said...

Mr West:

Thank you for your work. We don't always agree, but your time and effort to be rational in these times is appreciated.

I chose to use my own name for a particular reason: bullying. It is clear from the Council's actions at the last meeting that these men have very thin skin and cannot take criticism. Like so many bullies, they are threatening retribution and the way for all of Costa Mesa to counter that is to be identified and heard. No more pseudonyms: be counted and let theses people know exactly how many voters disagree and who they are.

I have posted on the Daily Pilot using a screen name for fear of retribution against my HOA (there have been hints of that), but our Council then dismisses all but the people they "know". Better put - the votes they can count.

Before some of the nay-sayers say it, I am not a "Union thug" or "lackey". I actually think they need reform, but I believe there are better methods for this than those being served by the majority of our Council. And I believe that our neighbors, who are city employees, should not be vilified, fired and negated because they belong to the union. These were the tactics in the Weimar Republic of 1939.

So stand up, say who you are and what you believe so that there is more impact in the outrage.

And, to OC Longhair - please check your facts. The overtime provisions to which you allude do NOT prohibit 12-hour days; they create overtime pay. This applies ONLY to hourly workers, not our salaried employees. That is why they are titled "exempt". I know this because I am an employer. The 4/12 is a new norm for business (there are studies that show it lowers absenteeism) and the government. Most Federal and DOD employees work under this format.

8/05/2011 09:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Pissed at CM Council said...

To OCLonghair.

I didnt know there was a law about any such thing about restricting all employees in California to a 8 hour work day. I've worked at a couple companies (Hertz Equipment rental for one) that I signed a contract at begaining of hire that my work week was a 40 hour week. Because some days we were swamped with paperwork and had to stay at work a couple hours over our normal 8 hour day. Then later the next week when it was slow we got to leave early to even the time in that pay period. I know that the city employees also signed a contract stating that that was their work week so it didnt count as over time.
I know the problem your talking about with the clocking out after 8 hours and staying at work. I know a manager at CVS that tells me thats common practice for their company because their work load demands more hours but CVS doesnt want to pay over time. So you get in trouble by either staying at work of the clock, or not getting work load done, or getting over time. Catch 22 x 2. Also I believe but not sure of fact that CVS managers also have a its a 40 work week but you can work 6 hour days or 10 hour days contract as well their work week isnt set in stone.
My problem with the park bathroom not only is my bladder over active thanks to old age, but the city has been blowing "no change to public services" up our butts this whole time. Now public services are effected for no other reason then "thats how other businesses are ran". Well as I've proven above other businesses have ran the same way the city has been running so why change it. Theres no point in doing so then you dont like the fact that hard working people that trim our trees, clean up trash and car crashes, fix our street in the hot sun, get a three day weekend to recuperate for the next week of city labor.
I bet Irvines bathrooms are open before 7 like ours where.

8/05/2011 10:30:00 AM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Mary Ann O'Connell,
Thanks for your post. I know it takes special courage to use your own identity, for the very reasons you mentioned.

It would be my preference that EVERY commenter use his real name when posting here, but I know we won't see that. I understand the freedom anonymity provides, but...

Those good folks who take the time to study issues and step to the speaker's podium at council meetings are brave souls, indeed. We see this council, unlike any other in my memory, not hesitate to chide and belittle speakers just because they disagree with a position they've presented. It's a frat boy mentality and certainly not the standard of professionalism that we've known here in the past.

8/05/2011 10:38:00 AM  
Anonymous HaHaHa said...

There is NO ONE more frat boy then Mensinger!

8/05/2011 03:02:00 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home