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Tag Archives: shakedown
City Manger’s Misconduct
New evidence of fired City Manager Doug Willmore’s misconduct was revealed with the latest public records release of city documents and emails (available at ElSegundo.org and PublicSafetyProject.org).
Willmore politicized City Hall. His secretary, Mickie Tagle, used city-paid time and public resources to do political opposition research against Chevron and against residents who criticized Willmore’s efforts to shakedown Chevron for an additional $10 million per year in taxes. One email showed she even tried to dig up dirt on me! Finance Director Deborah Cullen was also enthusiastically involved in Willmore’s shakedown efforts.
The emails show Willmore was doing Mayor Eric Busch’s bidding, taking direction from Busch in his attempt to extort more money from Chevron, without a majority of Council members even knowing about it. The city manager is legally required to take direction only from a majority vote or consensus of the City Council. Busch and Willmore targeted Chevron because they “can’t move” their refinery, and because of environmental politics.
The emails also show the fire and police unions have been behind this push to raise taxes to pay for their wildly excessive and unsustainable compensation and pensions. … Continue reading
It appears that former City Manager Doug Willmore has engaged liberal news organizations in a smear campaign against Carl Jacobson and Chevron, to get Carl unelected. Carl has been an honest, hard-working, selfless council member for many years. So why would Willmore smear Carl? Is this Willmore’s revenge against the only council member who voted to fire him who is also running for re-election?
It may be far more sinister than revenge. Willmore has two supporters and allies on city council – Mayor Eric Busch and Councilman Bill Fisher. Busch is not running again, and Fisher is Willmore’s only ally guaranteed to be on council after the coming election. If Willmore can get two more allies elected to the council in April, then he can get a multi-million dollar payoff in the guise of a “settlement” to his frivolous lawsuit against the city. … Continue reading
Email – Contact – El Segundo Finance Director Deborah Cullen provided phone/address book (VCF) file for Steve Stark at MuniServices
From: Cullen, Deborah
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2012 7:07 AM
To: Doug Willmore
Attachments: Steve Stark.vcf; ATT00001..txt
Steve Stark.vcf (695 B)
ATT00001..txt (292 B)
I don’t have Don’s number but MuniServices/Steve Stark would have it.
Deb Continue reading
From: Carol Wingate [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Friday, February 10, 2012 5:05 PM
To: *ALL CITY COUNCIL
Subject: Doug Willmore
Mr. Willmore was hired by the council to improve the financial picture of El Segundo. With
fresh eyes and an outside perspective he followed directions. This process uncovered some
unwelcome facts that seem to be hard for the established political entities to accept. If,
as it appears, Mr. Willmore was fired for doing his job; the City Council might reexamine
their hearts to discover if their loyalties lie with the citizens of El Segundo or
I anticipate your response.
Sent from my iPhone
Notes by Michael D. Robbins:
There were many good cause reasons to fire El Segundo City Manager Doug Willmore. However, he was fired without stating any of the good cause reasons, to reduce the City’s exposure to frivolous litigation. Even so, Doug Willmore filed frivolous lawsuits against the City of El Segundo (i.e., the City’s taxpayers), and personally against each of the three City Council members who did their duty and voted to fire him – Carl Jacobson, Suzanne Fuentes, and Don Brann.
Doug Willmore did not follow the direction of a majority of El Segundo City Council members, but instead catered to and followed direction from Mayor Eric Busch on important issues. His habitual lying to City Council members made it difficult if not impossible for them to trust him. His failure to follow direction, his poor negotiation results, and his written offers to the City employee unions with apparently unauthorized terms unnecessarily cost the City many millions of additional tax dollars per year.
References: … Continue reading
… There was an audit performed by MRC back in the early 1990’s. Out of that audit MRC determined Chevron owed unpaid
gas utility users tax of $3,431,600. The City reached a settlement agreement with Chevron for $800,000 and MRC received
25% or $200,000 as a result of its contract with El Segundo. The settlement agreement provided for an annual charge of
$150,000 per year subject to CPI adjustments annually in satisfaction of Chevron’s gas utility users tax liability.
Deborah and I are trying to determine … Continue reading
From: Willmore, Doug
Sent: Thursday, February 09, 2012 3:01 PM
To: Tagle, Mickie
Subject: FW: Thank You
From: Willmore, Doug
Sent: Wednesday, January 11, 2012 9:49 AM
To: Leyman, Jeff (Patrol Sergeant)
Subject: RE: Thank You
Thanks a lot for the feedback, Jeff. I appreciate it. And, thanks for the great work that you and your team does.
From: Leyman, Jeff (Patrol Sergeant)
Sent: Tuesday, January 10, 2012 3:03 PM
To: Willmore, Doug
Subject: Thank You
I was waiting to speak to you personally after the 2 PM meeting but Chris Thomason was talking and I didn’t want to interrupt. I wanted to thank you for exploring the Chevron tax matter. Several employees including myself have thought the relationship between Chevron and El Segundo was peculiar, as we knew they paid very little in taxes. We need a guy with courage right now and you seem to be that guy.
Sgt. Jeff Leyman Continue reading
El Segundo making Chevron’s taxes too high
The city manager’s Chevron Shakedown must stop, including efforts to extort large “gifts” of money under threat of a $10 million annual tax hike. The city will suffer long-term damage to its reputation as a good city to locate a business.
Doug Willmore used false premises to construct a deceptive one-sided analysis for the Chevron property, rather than a true cost-versus-benefits analysis. It is unfair and dishonest to compare tax revenues generated per acre by the Chevron refinery with that of other local businesses. Land use in other South Bay cities is mostly residential and not three-quarters commercial/industrial as in El Segundo.
In his one-sided analysis, Willmore ignored the cost for the city to provide and maintain infrastructure and services for residents and businesses that would otherwise exist on the massive Chevron refinery property.
If the refinery never existed, that land would be mostly residential and some commercial. Tax revenues would be much less, and the city would have to provide and maintain infrastructure and services for twice as many residents at great expense that Willmore failed to include in his seriously flawed and biased analysis. … Continue reading
Proposed Chevron Tax Increase
The cooperation between business and community is one of our city’s greatest assets. Businesses not only generate most of our city tax revenues, they also provide generous support to our schools and charities. The coexistence of community and business is a sensitive relationship and, like any good relationship, requires work.
In previous years the relationship between city and business was built on fairness, openness and trust. I’m not sure that relationship exists today. The current leadership in our city appears to have a different approach. The proposed 1,000 percent acreage tax increase to Chevron is an example where the city appears to have a shoot first and ask questions later approach to working with business.
The story behind the proposed tax increase told by City Manager Doug Willmore is an interesting study. … Continue reading
Tax Increase Could Be Potential Blank Check
As a lifelong resident and former mayor of El Segundo, I find the recent City Council decision to pursue a ballot measure to increase taxes on “refineries” extremely troubling, for a number of reasons.
First, the process was utterly lacking in transparency, in that the City Manager’s analysis and subsequent last-minute agendizing of the proposal was apparently initiated without all the Councilmembers’ knowledge.
Second, Chevron the sole target of the proposed tax increase was not informed until after the fact and had no opportunity to provide input or data that might have enhanced the City Manager’s understanding and assessment of the substantial combined revenues the company already provides the city.
Third, no input was solicited from … Continue reading
Table Tax Increase Proposal
As a 40-year resident of El Segundo I’m baffled and somewhat distressed by the City Council’s attempt to increase taxes on Chevron by over $10 million annually. It’s unclear that this action is necessary and even less clear what the money would be used for.
Despite the City’ Manager’s statements that the funds would go for infrastructure and capital projects, it’s possible they could go to the general fund.
Further, if infrastructure is the issue, the customary route would be through bonds, not a tax increase. In my opinion, having been deeply engaged in the passage of three school bond measures and serving at one time on one of the bond citizen’s financial oversight committees, this approach would have made much more sense.
Chevron not only supported those bonds, the company is the largest payer of school bond taxes. It’s entirely likely they would have been open to a discussion about how they could support the City’s current infrastructure needs.
By choosing instead to promote a tax increase that singles out Chevron alone among all the City’s taxpayers, the Council is likely to irreparably damage its relationship with one if its strongest supporters; erode goodwill among the business community and voters alike; and face a costly, resounding defeat at the polls in April. … Continue reading