Calexico council retains board

November 21, 2001|By AARON CLAVERIE, Staff Writer

CALEXICO — For the second time this year, the City Council here came within a hair's width of replacing the Calexico Housing Authority board of commissioners.

As was the case this summer, the council did not do so, voting 3-2 to allow the seven commissioners to continue to serve.

The council then voted 5-0 to enact a series of requirements regarding the board's conduct, including immediate training for commissioners, the hiring of a resident relations person, resident council elections within 30 days and the hiring of an interim executive director within eight days. The housing board recently fired longtime authority Executive Director Lupita Rios.

The council considered replacing the board after years of problems with the authority's board and administration were brought to light by an independent assessment of the authority's operations.


After reviewing the findings in the federally funded study, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recommended removing the board for a host of procedural violations and personal squabbles among members.

Two weeks ago, when a cadre of HUD representatives sat in the City Hall chambers, the council voted 4-1 to have City Attorney Michael Rood write up a resolution to remove the board.

Tuesday night, two councilmen who voted for Rood to write the resolution did not vote to enact it.

The two were Mayor Pro Tem John Renison and Councilman Gilbert Grijalva. They were joined in Tuesday's 3-2 majority vote by Mayor Victor Carrillo, the only councilmen to vote two weeks ago against writing the resolution.

Councilmen Frank Montoya and Javier Alatorre voted to remove the board on the recommendation of HUD.

After the council's decision, audience members who had lobbied for the council to keep the board sported wide grins and chatted amicably as they filed out of the council chambers.

Carrillo asked those audience members to be quiet as they left as their discussions at the chambers' door drowned out the reading of the next agenda item.

>> Staff Writer Aaron Claverie can be reached at 337-3419 or

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