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Sunday, June 22, 2008

Deborah Edgerly Is Scapegoat For Common Council Practice Of Influencing City Staff

What I find so "funny" -- and by that I mean strange -- about the entire rush to oust Oakland City Administrator Deborah Edgerly, is that she not only does have the City Charter-endowed right to impact what City staff -- including the police department -- but she'e being scapegoated for an action that certain City Council members have been known for: calling city staff to have them act on something. The difference is that Miss E can do that, but City Councilmembers can't do that.

But it happens on a regular basis. I think this is a real flaw in the City Charter in that Councilmembers should be able to have some sway over what is done by City Staff, but only to a certain extent. But the fact is that at least one Councilmember was known to call city staffers and push through contracts for relatives. That's a fact.

The East Bay Express, and some other bloggers just don't know Oakland at all.


Charlie2 said...

Zennie, you can't cut the tip off the iceberg (more of it will simply rise into view). You are right, corruption and greed go far beyond Edgerly. When she tried to protect a guy apparently negotiating a gun deal with a drug boss, though, she finally crossed a line even the mayor could not ignore -- although we'll see how much backbone he has.

Zennie Abraham said...

Ah. I'm not saying that the city's "rife with corruption, so much as what Miss E's being blamed for is really 1) her job and 2) a common habit. If you want to call that bad, so be it.

But let's look at it this way. Many who voted for Nancy Nadel to return to her City Council seat, did so because they said "she was effective at getting things done."

Think about that. That means she has a good relationship with the City Administrator and the City Staff. Councilmember Nadel does not have a staff large enough to provide every public service, so she has to call persons in the appropriate departments.

Here's where it gets tricky. She can ask for help or assistance but she can't try to control what they do. Now, one Councilmember has done this in the past -- the recent past. And they're still with us.

Now do you call that corruption? Then if you do, you must also say your City Council Person can only act via being corrupt.

Now, let's add that what the CAO has done -- she didn't walk into a negotiation regarding a gun deal -- is really within her Charter-given powers. What's going on is someone over at the Oakland Police is twisting the story to stick it to Deborah Edgerly.

carlon said...

zennie...as I understand it, its not so much that Deb Edge is, as you say, "trying to ask for help or assistance" from other city staff and departments. Her most serious charge is tipping off her nephew to an investigation. Those are two very different things.

Circumventing civil service rules in order to get a family member hired riles those of us in the union who had to go through the civil service hoops to get our jobs. Those rules are put in place to make the process as fair and unbiased as possible. How do you define nepotism? I'm curious.

Finally, can you be more specific about which councilmember is doing the same thing and exactly what the situation is? I'd be curious. If they are breaking rules that are in place, they should also face consequences.

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