Comic strip blasts city department

June 05, 2002|By AARON CLAVERIE

Staff Writer

CALEXICO — After passing out an illustrated comic strip to each of the city councilmen to buttress her point, Ana Galindo of Andrade Avenue told the City Council she thinks the city's Building Department is "irregular."

According to both the comic strip, which featured caricatures of city officials, and her comments to the council, Galindo was cited by the Building Department for renting rooms in her house when she lives in a single-family residential zone.

She thinks she should not have been cited because the people renting in her house are family members. Galindo thinks the Building Department's actions in the past five years constitutes harassment.


Mayor John Renison asked in Spanish if she would like to meet with City Manager Richard Inman to work through her complaints.

She said "no thanks." She said she'll deal with the department in court.

Before that court date, she wanted the City Council to know about alleged violations by Building Department officials. She said at least two inspectors have illegal additions on their own homes.

She asked rhetorically, "You have to be an inspector to do whatever you want to do?"

Chief Building Official Bob Williams, one of those featured in the comic strip, released a statement this morning that read in part, "We treat everyone in this city equally and will continue to provide a high level of service to the city and to its citizens. We, of course, will continue to strive to improve our service to the community. I am very happy with my staff and their commitment to this department and to the city.

"Unfounded and erroneous statements made by the public will not deter my staff nor myself from doing the job that we are paid to do. We will, again, continue to do the best job that we can for this city."

After Tuesday's meeting, City Attorney Michael Rood said the Building Department employees that Galindo said were guilty of code violations have both received conditional- use permits for the work they've had done to their homes.

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

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