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Mayor Responds to Committee's Queries

Citizens' panel gets answers from City Hall.

Mayor Mary Sessom issued a response to a community group’s queries Wednesday afternoon, clarifying some points and attempting to shed light on how local government operates.

The citizen’s group, which has offered wide-ranging criticisms of City Hall, continues to question how the city manages its operations. They also have requested interviews with public employees in a quest to act as an oversight committee.

The latest effort of the self-formed panel, established last spring in response to dissatisfaction with poor street conditions, was a six-point questionnaire sent Monday to Sessom and the City Council asking for information on a variety of topics. Questions range from pension funding and the role of the finance director to street maintenance and organizational charts.

Headed by Jack Moore, a longtime resident of Lemon Grove and property owner, the six-member Citizens’ Oversight Committee consists of Ivy Westmoreland, Lou Melendez, Bob Holaday, Steve Browne and Robert Jones. 

The group formed in early 2011 with a desire to take a close look at the city’s Public Works Department. Its plan was to review projects and programs related to street maintenance and repairs.

Sessom noted that the council will consider next month whether to address objections raised by the committee regarding management of the sanitation district.

She also appeared to be confused by the group’s goals, noting at one point that Councilwoman Mary England and City Manager Graham Mitchell had met with them regarding street conditions.

“I’m not clear on what sort of response you are seeking,” she wrote.

For a full list of the group’s questions, and Sessom’s response, see the media box.

LG Joe January 12, 2012 at 05:09 PM
Personally I don’t see why there is a problem in answering the questions put forth by community residents. The city leadership should welcome the opportunity to answer to criticism from its constituency. To not do so sends a signal that the city leadership doesn’t want to be bothered with accountability.
Carol Weiss January 12, 2012 at 07:56 PM
I have also wondered about repair of the streets. The ones I think need fixing are Golden Avenue between School Lane and Kempf, Lester Street and what I think is North Avenue where you come off the freeway at Lemon Grove Avenue and turn right onto the street that feeds into Home Depot.
LemonGroove January 13, 2012 at 03:40 AM
Practically every street needs repair in Lemon Grove, even the ones that have just been repaired, because it probably was torn up by a utility a day after. It's a very sorry position to be in. I grew up here and streets were only bad in TJ, but now ours are probably more sorry. Of course citizen's questions should always be answered, and truthfully at that.

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