Port Hueneme has no department heads- why?

By Tom Dunn,  Port Hueneme Coalition of Concerned Citizens
 
HeadlessFigures
 
I read an article in the Ventura County Star, May 22nd by Ann Kallas, stating that Port Hueneme now has no department heads since the last one, Chris Theisen,  Public Works Dept., resigned and is taking a job with the county of Ventura.  I thought and I believe many readers would be interested in knowing WHY?  Kallas stated that “city problems” had caused the exodus of Port Hueneme department heads and other city staff over the last year or two. The Star editorial staff and Kallas always prefer to quote the old line city council members that blame the two new council members for the city’s problems rather than give us the details.  Will the Star ever cite and document who, what, when and how, the basic of journalism, why all of the department heads are gone, and  there is a fiscal crisis, personnel shortage and low morale over the last four years.
 
The answer to WHY? is the years of budget deficits, overspending, huge salary raises, poor personnel hiring and firings, HUD $2.4 million misuse of funds investigation, $10 million loss in general fund reserves, numerous claims against the city and management, Police Dept budget limits, possible job outsourcing and poor job security in the near future, all seldom mentioned in the Star.
 
Even worse than the Star staff and writer limiting what it  reports, Ann Kallas quoted council member John Sharkey saying “some council members need to control their demons and refrain from abusing the employees”.  This ludicrous tirade went unchallenged by Kallas and Star managerial staff as they both always have done when covering Port Hueneme City Hall.  A  large majority of Kallas’ quotes come from the old line council members, not the two new members elected in 2014 to make changes at city hall, who were stopped at every opportunity to get at the truth by the old line members that got most of the ink. This type of reporting and editorial editing is a disservice to the citizens of Port Hueneme who depend on the Star for honest factual reporting since Port Hueneme doesn’t have a newspaper. 
 
Sharkey’s slandering demeaning attitude towards other city council members, poor leadership, fiscal irresponsibility and supporting incompetent city management over the last five years is more than enough for him to resign from the city council, and apologize to the voters of Port Hueneme.  Twenty plus years on the city council is way too long. Sharkey, Mayor Breeze and council member Schnopp all have contributed greatly to the current crisis Port Hueneme is in and the loss of all department heads is a loud cry for Breeze and Schnopp not to be reelected in November and Sharkey to resign.  Their leadership has failed, greatly by any measure of evaluation, and they would put Port Hueneme’s future in great peril.    SAVE PORT HUENEME – REFORM CITY COUNCIL 
 
Editor’s note: As always, alternate opinions are welcome.

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Steven Gama
Steven Gama
4 years ago

At the last Council meeting a gentleman from BEACON made an appearance which at first glance seemed to be much about nothing. However, in the course of discussion BEACON was included in the budget to get its $9,000 yearly membership fee renewed. I did some research and found out that Jonathan Sharkey is the co-chair! This what non transparency looks like. The appropriate thing for Sharkey to do before bestowing praise on the gentlemen was to disclose his role in the organization. Hopefully, this slip up into transparency will end the cities membership in BEACON. BEACON is an ineffective organization! Come to Hueneme Beach and see first hand the erosion. BEACON stands for Beach Erosion Authority for Clean Oceans and Nourishment. So the ARMY core of engineers came to the rescue of Ventura Harbor earlier this year; however, they left Hueneme high and dry. Their supposed to come back to Hueneme in October. Meanwhile the Sea Wall at the Port of Hueneme is taking direct wave impact of which it was never designed to withstand. The beach is eroding away very rapidly. We shall see what the resulting damage shall be. Where is BEACON? Collecting $9000 membership fees so Sharkey can a couple free lunches.