Horne plans to draft spending policy

February 21, 2001|By DARREN SIMON, Staff Writer

The Imperial Irrigation District directors debated the idea of setting a spending policy that would govern themselves but took no action on the matter Tuesday.

Board President Andy Horne presented the idea of setting such a policy, stating the district has no such policy for the board while there is a policy for district employees.

Director Stella Mendoza spoke in support of creating a spending policy for directors.

Mendoza, the newest board member, asked if there is a limit to how much one director could spend. Horne answered there is no limit.

Mendoza responded, "I think each director should get a set budget. I think we should be accountable."

Director Bruce Kuhn, who said he does not see a need for such a policy, added, "We are accountable by our actions. I don't see where anything is broken right now."


Horne disagreed, stating there have been abuses but he was not speaking about any current board member.

Mendoza said, "I'm not comfortable operating this way. This needs to be rectified."

The board has an expense budget of $73,200. The board president is responsible for approving the expenses of the rest of the directors.

Horne said one concern he has is there is no one who has the authority to approve the president's expenses. For that reason Horne has asked Mendoza, the board vice president, to sign off on his expenses.

Director Lloyd Allen expressed concern about adopting a policy that might slow the process by which directors are reimbursed for expenses.

He said travel is part of the job of a director and it can become expensive when trying to represent the district's needs outside the Imperial Valley.

Allen joked if Horne wants to develop a policy he should take three to four years to draft it.

Horne said he does plan to draft a policy to present to the board during its next meeting, which will be in IID's La Quinta office.

Staff Writer Darren Simon can be reached at 337-4082.

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