CALEXICO — Defying a direct order from the Los Angeles office of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Calexico Housing Authority board of commissioners voted 4-1 to not name Juan Ortiz the authority's acting executive director.
Earlier this week, Bob Cook, HUD regional director in Los Angeles, spoke to both the chairman of the authority board, Jesus "Chuy" Solano, and the authority's administrative services director, Ortiz, via a conference call.
According to the two, Cook told Solano that Ortiz was supposed to take control of the authority while Executive Director Lupita Rios is on a leave of absence.
The board voted to ignore Cook's direction after a conference with its attorney, Eduardo Rivera.
Commissioner John Romo dissented.
Rivera called Cook's direction "very radical" and said Cook is "mistaken in many things."
"There is information that Cook has that has not been substantiated," Rivera said.
He told the board it was following state bylaws and had the authority to set policy at an executive level.