Eye On Modesto

Thoughts and observations about Modesto and Stanislaus County

MID…The Lame Ducks Do it again..People Should Be Outraged.!

By Emerson Drake

Just when you think things are somewhat under control down at the Modesto Irrigation District (MID) the old guard pulls a

Luke on Modesto, Tatooine

fast one.  And just like they have in the past they voted for an incomplete  piece of legislation called Board Policies Regarding Board Governance Process and Staff Linkage.  This was a ghost from the past since it was under this ‘guise’ they voted for the “Serpa” rule.  This was how Allen Short used to manipulate the information made available to elected Board members and the public.  One of the main parts of the original policy enabled the General Manager to use a ’15 minute rule’  as a tool to limit staff time to  research questions from the MID Board.

Here is the scary part. According to General Manager Roger Van Hoy  parts of the policy were  not included in the material on the website and in the packets passed out to the public AND the Directors. Here is the incomplete segment the Directors and the public were allowed to see.


The General Manager stated links to “other” policies” would be added using hyper-links referencing the other unnamed policies and enforced.  I specifically asked if any of the old SERPA rule were included.  NO response was given.  I requested a delay so the Board could read the entire policy they would be voting for and was ignored. Director Larry Byrd said he didn’t realize this was an action item and requested more time to study the proposed governance policy.

Unfortunately Unity of Control BL-4 which was approved IS the Serpa Rule

Once again the ultimate power is in the hands of the General Manager and the best we can hope for is a benevolent Dictator

. BL-4 states: B. In the case of Board members or committees with MID employees or contractors requesting information or assistance without Board authorization, the General Manager or the General Council MUST refuse such requests that require, in their opinion, a material amount of staff time, or funds, or are disruptive.   In the past Allen Short used a 15 minute time limit as his policy for a material amount of staff time. And just what describes disruptive?

Tom Van Groningen and Paul Warda revisit the crime scene

Directors Van Groningen and Warda were among the Directors voting for the original policy and Glen Wild has been a rubber stamp from the beginning of his term four years ago.  Sadly it appears the lame ducks are desperate for so sort of legacy. I would have thought they had placed enough anchors around the necks of ratepayers in the form of sky-high rates.

Paul Warda had promised to vote against this policy at the last meeting

He did come up to me during a short break five minutes prior to the Board taking up the policy and informed me of his rethinking his prior decision against the governance policy and that he would be supporting it.  It seems a legacy, no matter how devastating, is more important to these three lame ducks than having helped improve MID.

You can register your unhappiness with their decision by emailing the MID Board at board@mid.org  Ask them to take BL-4 out of the Governance policy immediately.


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2 thoughts on “MID…The Lame Ducks Do it again..People Should Be Outraged.!

  1. Did Jake Wenger have any comments on the outcome of this meeting???

    This little bureaucracy is no different from a school district like Sylvan or the Modesto City Council or the Democratic imbalance in Sacramento or this president trying to take over the judiciary and the legislative branches. They make the rules and then they modify them or eliminate them from time to time as needed to pass their agenda’s or get another perk or EXEMPT themselves from obamacare, but shove it down our collective throats. It does service to deadbeats and tweekers though and don’t forget illegal’s !!

    Yep, its the old “GOLDEN RULE”: he who has (or controls) the gold, makes the rules. Get it. Got it. Good!

    Our elected officials will serve those who bought and paid for them. The rest of us will do our diligence and pay through the nose, because we didn’t buy that politician . I have to stop for a minute and consider the fact that ‘WE ELECTED THESE BASTARDS”. Why you ask? So they would fulfill the duties of their office
    and diligently!! What we as regular folks is not what we voted on. Once elected, these guys go off and do whatever they’re told by their donors.

    My God! Aren’t there any people out there who will just do their damned job like they are supposed to, according to the book??!!

    Are we regular folks supposed to put all of our nickels together and buy this guy or gal s0 that when they get into office they will serve us, the multitude?! Why, hell no! That’s asking too much of these guys, who’s salaries, cars, offices, staffs, haircuts, meals, shoes, (they have to walk their districts sometimes), flowers (for their girlfriends) chewing gum and jelly beans. Did I forget anything? If I did just respond to this article.

    To coin a phrase from an old movie, They Shoot Horses Don’t They? NO, NO, NO, I’m not suggesting we go on a hunt like our ex vice president did and “accidently” shoot your buddy. haha Heck no. We do have to do something to get positive results from these takers who slop at the publicly paid for trough.

    Colorado just did a good thing that probably scares the crap out of some politicians. Recall elections do work. I gotta pat ’em on the back for dumping those two deadbeat politicians!

    The “Get-it-right” Bee said “Sheriff’s don’t get to pick the laws they enforce. Well, in this case I’m with them sheriff’s on that one. However, it ain’t right, but then, I ain’t wearin’ the badge either, so it ain’t on me.

    Gettin’ serious here, where does Representative Jeff Denham get off pickin’ the laws he don’t want to enforce? And why is he patronizing illegal aliens who broke the laws to get here by giving them amnesty and every other damned thing for subsistence in this country, INCLUDING MY SOCIAL SECURITY that these guys didn’t pay for???!!! Jeffy, there’s laws on them books you helped to write, right? There’s laws against illegal entry into this country, right? I think they say you’re supposed to get in line not jump the fence! And I say to you, if you want to give rebirth to the republican party, don’t do it by stepping on the “CITIZENS” YOU REPRESENT. You know we pay umpteen millions to support illegals. Its on us! Hay, if you want to support them, get all your fellow “honorable” politicians to foot the bill.

    FYI, the Repubs could have had that last election if they had the balls to do it.
    Well, this wouldn’t fit in The Bee and too many subjects. Shucks.

  2. The Board Governance Policy is far too long winded and wordy for my taste. By adding many lengthy sections it allows the opportunity to slip in bad policy. I agree that the “Serpa Rule” section may be taken out before the election, but if not it should be taken out immediately after the election. This of course depends on who is elected in November.

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