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Voice: Give Irby, Asplundh the boot

March 01, 2002

In September, Andy Horne was defending Imperial Irrigation District employees and how necessary they were. But in November he, along with Lloyd Allen, voted to give Irby and Asplundh $14 million in jobs that were performed by Valley residents are now performed by an outside company.

Why the sudden change? His action makes me realize how easy it would be for a company with $14 million to corrupt the directors and top management at IID.

If Irby and Asplundh are like Enron, they will do whatever is necessary to retain a contract with IID, influencing our directors by secretly offering them free trips, expensive gifts, placing relatives on the payroll.

Al Capone corrupted Chicago with his millions. Irby and Asplundh have millions to corrupt IID.

How will the public be able to monitor these companies when Irby is from Mississippi and Asplundh is from Pennsylvania?

Some IID supervisors are carpetbaggers who are more interested in putting another dollar in their pockets then serving the community. Irby has their loyalty.

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IID employees tell me if the contracts continue, not enough people will be trained to take over their jobs when they retire.

Without skilled IID employees, Irby and Asplundh will own IID. Large contracts between private companies and publicly owned companies lead to corruption. Corruption leads to higher electric bills. One of the first signs of corruption is indifference toward the community by our elected officials.

IID directors have eagerly given away our jobs. I've been told IID is bringing people from Mexico who can't speak or read English and is giving them $50,000-a-year jobs because IID is too lazy to train Valley residents. Everyone's getting jobs at the IID but Valley residents. Whoever is doing the hiring at IID should be fired.

Maybe Horne and Allen feel our kids don't need jobs because they can always go on welfare. IID has become crooked. We the public have to set IID straight.

As owners of the IID we have the right to decide who gets the jobs at the IID — they should be given to Valley residents. Horne and Allen have taken jobs away from our kids. Let's do the same to them and take their jobs away. In March, let's give them the boot, and tell them "Hasta la vista, baby!" The IID jobs belong to our kids, not to Irby or Asplundh.

JOHN GARCIA

Imperial

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