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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 4, 1999
The longtime manager of a water district near Ojai was sentenced Wednesday to three years' probation after pleading no contest to charges that he stole more than $1,300 worth of water for his rental home and horse boarding business. Ron Singleton, who remains employed as general manager of the Meiners Oaks County Water District, could have received up to three years in prison. But Ventura County Superior Court Judge Bruce Clark said the case is not serious enough to warrant jail time.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 4, 2001 | From Times staff reports
Michael Planet knows it won't be easy stepping in behind Sheila Gonzalez, a virtual superstar in the world of court administration who left the county's top job for a state post last month. But he has a plan. "My job will be to just sort of stay out of the way, at least until I figure out what's going on," he said.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 30, 1999 | CATHERINE SAILLANT, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Declaring that Ventura County is "near financial chaos," the man hired to run county government just a week ago resigned without warning over the weekend after deciding he could never muster the support to fix "overwhelming problems," county officials disclosed Monday. The unexpected resignation of David L. Baker left county officials stunned and facing a growing crisis in leadership. With the county already reeling from a major Medicare fraud fiasco, Supervisor John K.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 4, 2001 | From Times staff reports
County supervisors will consider appointing three members to a new committee that will help guide decisions on how the county spends $10 million a year in tobacco settlement money. County Executive Officer Johnny Johnston is recommending appointment of Steven Arvizu, former president of Oxnard College; Laura Bartels, an attorney with Taylor, Scoles & Bartels; and Grant Brimhall, former Thousand Oaks city manager, to the Finance Oversight/Advisory Committee.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 13, 1999 | MARGARET TALEV, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Officials say the Medicare financial scandal that has wracked Ventura County isn't hampering the search to replace Lin Koester, the county's retiring chief administrative officer. There are 65 applicants for the job, from California and other states. The consultant leading the search on Thursday recommended trimming that list to fewer than 15, Supervisor John K. Flynn said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 30, 1999 | CATHERINE SAILLANT, TIMES STAFF WRITER
After only four days on the job, Ventura County Chief Administrative Officer David Baker resigned Monday, sending a scathing six-page assessment of county government to his bosses that said the "problems are overwhelming and there is near financial chaos." The unexpected resignation left county officials stunned and facing a crisis in leadership. One supervisor said that with the county already facing major financial problems stemming from its $15.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 30, 1999 | CATHERINE SAILLANT, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Declaring that Ventura County is "near financial chaos," the county administrative officer hired just a week ago resigned without warning over the weekend after deciding he could never muster the support to fix "overwhelming problems," county officials disclosed Monday. The unexpected resignation of David L. Baker left county officials stunned and facing a crisis in leadership. With the county already reeling from a major Medicare fraud fiasco, Supervisor John K.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 4, 2001 | From Times staff reports
Michael Planet knows it won't be easy stepping in behind Sheila Gonzalez, a virtual superstar in the world of court administration who left the county's top job for a state post last month. But he has a plan. "My job will be to just sort of stay out of the way, at least until I figure out what's going on," he said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 31, 2001 | From Times staff reports
During a trip to New York this week, Ventura County officials are asking financial rating firms to maintain the county government's high credit rating. A favorable report means the county can continue to secure low-interest rates on loans, saving taxpayers millions of dollars. County Chief Johnny Johnston said he will cite reforms aimed at tightening his control over the county's $1-billion budget as a reason to maintain high ratings.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 9, 1993 | TINA DAUNT
The county Board of Supervisors on Tuesday voted unanimously to appoint longtime county employee Glenn Gray to the position of acting assessor. Gray, who has worked as the county's assistant assessor since 1986, will immediately take over the department's top job, left vacant when county Assessor Jerry Sanford died after suffering a stroke in May. Gray will serve the remainder of Sanford's term, which expires in January, 1995.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 31, 2001 | From Times staff reports
During a trip to New York this week, Ventura County officials are asking financial rating firms to maintain the county government's high credit rating. A favorable report means the county can continue to secure low-interest rates on loans, saving taxpayers millions of dollars. County Chief Johnny Johnston said he will cite reforms aimed at tightening his control over the county's $1-billion budget as a reason to maintain high ratings.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 7, 2001 | MARGARET TALEV, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Choosing a man known more for his ability to balance a tight budget than to stare down department heads, county supervisors Tuesday unanimously selected veteran county employee John Johnston to replace Harry Hufford as chief administrator next month. Johnston, 58, affable chief of the General Services Agency, has worked for the county for nearly 14 years, beginning in the 1970s and resuming in 1998 after a stint in the private sector.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 25, 2001 | MARGARET TALEV, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Joe McClure's job was to lure businesses to Ventura County by portraying it as a great place to raise a family. His marketing campaign focused on the county's reputation for good schools, safe neighborhoods, beautiful weather and uncrowded beaches. "Ventura County: For your life's work," went the pitch. But now the head of the county's Economic Development Collaborative is taking his large family--including eight children--and heading to Montana.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 2, 2000 | DAVID KELLY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
After more than five years managing the county's airports in Camarillo and Oxnard--and serving as a lightning rod for airport critics--Rod Murphy announced Friday he is resigning to look for "new challenges." Murphy, 56, has taken heat from airport neighbors, politicians and pilots since he was hired in 1994. Foes routinely blasted Murphy as a wasteful administrator and accused him of failing to take seriously their concerns.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 2, 2000 | MARGARET TALEV, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Six months ago, Harry Hufford reported for his first day as Ventura County's interim chief administrative officer. His assignment was to close a $5-million budget gap, bring unruly department heads back in line and restore order to the increasingly fractious Board of Supervisors. Hufford, 68, who served as Los Angeles County's chief administrator from 1974 to 1985, quickly went to work, imposing a hiring freeze and refining a plan to put the county's finances back in order.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 6, 2000 | MARGARET TALEV, TIMES STAFF WRITER
When David L. Baker quit last year after four days as Ventura County's chief administrative officer, he left behind a six-page letter that blasted what he saw as years' worth of dysfunction that was bleeding county government of its fiscal and managerial stability. Today, Harry Hufford, the retired Los Angeles County administrator hired to turn things around, will present a letter of his own to the Board of Supervisors.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 18, 1993 | SARA CATANIA, TIMES STAFF WRITER
In a move described as a way to streamline public health services, Lawrence E. Dodds, head of the county's Public Health Department, has resigned, county officials said Wednesday. Dodds, who was director of the 235-employee department for six years, said he left the post to concentrate on evaluation of diseases and disease trends in the county. He will retain the title of county public health officer, a job he held simultaneously with his directorship until his resignation Feb. 26.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 9, 1993 | TINA DAUNT, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Vicky Howard took her place on the Ventura County Board of Supervisors nearly 2 1/2 years ago with little fanfare. The 59-year-old former Simi Valley councilwoman's election to the county panel was overshadowed by the stunning win of young political novice Maria VanderKolk, who ousted Madge Schaefer from her seat representing Thousand Oaks. After both east county supervisors were sworn in as board members at a January, 1991, ceremony, VanderKolk basked in the attention of her well-wishers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 18, 2000 | GINA PICCALO, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Officials have set aside $100,000 to retain a top Los Angeles law firm for county leaders who are the subject of an ongoing FBI criminal investigation. The probe seeks to determine whether they deliberately defrauded the government for nearly a decade by submitting improper Medicare claims. The county already has incurred $25.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 31, 2000
Kevin DeWitt, the county's former mental health administrator, was sentenced Thursday to 120 days in jail and placed on three years probation for using a phony doctoral diploma and bogus transcripts to land his job. The 40-year-old Camarillo resident pleaded guilty last month to a single felony count of using forged documents in 1996 to obtain an $83,000-a-year position as the county's deputy director of behavioral health.
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