News Water District

Just two weeks…

The "new board" is meandering down the path of mediocrity that has plagued the previous decade of the Rio Linda Elverta Community Water District.

Just two weeks.

That’s how long it’s taken the “new board” to start meandering down the path of mediocrity that has plagued the previous decade of the Rio Linda Elverta Community Water District.

Over the past two special meetings, the board has placed an item on the agenda; “to consider the appointment, evaluation of performance, discipline or dismissal of appointed general manager”. Saturday night’s meeting was a brief period of public comment and the board immediately went into closed session. The session lasted nearly three hours, after which it was announced that there was “no action” on the agenda item.

Three hours and no reportable action? After three hours there had to have been something to report. Something, even if it’s not the RIGHT thing.

The right thing would be to terminate Joe Sherrill for not meeting the requirements of the position.

The district’s policy manual is publicly available on the district’s website (Click here). In the manual, on page 34 it states the requirements for the position.

Graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with a degree in public administration, political science, business management or a closely related field

Seven (7) years of experience as a manager or assistant manager in a California governmental agency operating a water utility (a masters degree or registration as a professional engineer may be substituted for two years of experience)

Possession of a current California Department of Health Water Treatment Operator Grade II ( or higher) certificate or the ability to obtain one within one year of employment

Possession of a valid Class C California driver’s license or the ability to obtain one within one (1) month of employment.

Seven years experience as a manager or assistant manager operating a water facility AND an Operator II certificate. Joe Sherrill has neither of these qualifications.

As reported in the Bee, Sherrill said “I gave them my perception on what reality is and they gave me theirs, and we kind of met in the middle.”

The reality is that the lame duck board hired a GM that they could manipulate (as evidenced in last week’s sit-out protest) and the three new board members are allowing themselves to be railroaded by the shameless sub-committee of Nelson-Hood, Johnson, Mehta and Sherrill.

Last week, LAFCO offered up a letter asking the district to take advantage of  a voluntary receivership. If big changes don’t occur in the coming weeks, this could be the best possible action to take.

A couple of side notes from the meeting;

  • I noticed that Cathy Nelson-Hood and Vivien Spicer-Johnson were seated at opposite ends of the dais this week. This is a very good thing. Previously, Hood and Johnson would whisper to each other incessantly, while complaining vociferously when others did the same thing. In fact, last night Joe Sherrill and Ravi Mehta whispered off-mic quite often, but not a word was said.
  • Why does the board allow former director Mary Harris to use her three minutes of public comment to complain about the content of the Rio Linda News? It’s an issue that has nothing to do with the issues on the agenda, and nothing to do with the business of the water district. Yet, the board allowed her to spout off complaint after complaint about Kathy Santos-Reed and her journalism.
  • Channel 3 were in attendance and filming interviews, and the Sacramento Bee were well represented by Robert Davila and an inconspicuous Carlos Alcala (as inconspicuous as he could be).
  • Note to self… never try to eat a Tummy’s hot roast beef sandwich in your car before the meeting.

Time to go.. I need to clean up my car.


Click here to post a comment
  • Get it right. Courtney stated that the Board would be working with the GM and would personally contact the employees to try to resolve these problems. Maybe it was not the outcome you wanted, but they spent a lot of time working on it. The one thing I did notice was that the GM appears to understand that he reports to this Board.

  • This has nothing to do with the employees, or the stance that the previous board had taken against them.

    Read the article again.

    This is about a GM with no qualifications for the position. Why was he chosen? How was he chosen? Who were the other applicants or candidates?

    Judging by his appointment, I have more applicable experience for the position. Of course, I’m not stupid enough to get myself appointed to that posting.

    This district desperately needs a GM with a strong background in municipal water operations, and he ain’t it.

  • John, I couldnt agree with you more!!! If the new board actually has hope or faith in this “so called GM” then I pray to god the district is given to another agency! It will be best for all involved to be guided by individuals who actually have the best interest of the district AND the LOYAL WORKING EMPLOYEES who have been drug through WAY TOO MUCH for WAY TOO LONG! I guess i will trust what they did is for a reason, but i think i will be kicking myself in the ass for that too! Hope not!!!

  • All I can say are the three new board members are genuinely working their butts off to straighten things out. No one in the world could have predicted just how bad Hood, Johnson and Sherrill would behave. I have never ever seen this type of behavior in public EVER!

    As for Mary Harris and her complaints… well she is no longer on the board is she! That fact alone probably makes her very mad at me – oh well!

    Joe Sherrill is the very bottom of the barrel for anything and he is as rude as can be. He will not fill any public records requests and that is breaking the law!
    He should be out of there soon.

    Please continue to support Martin, Courtney and Frank.

  • Come on dude its Rio Linda! I bet Rush Limbaugh would have a field day with this one! Society dont really care,its not what you know its who you know.The Joblessness among those with advanced educations as that group makes up 30% of the labor force, The government’s figures show there were 2.4 million unemployed people last month with bachelor’s degrees and higher. Why would someone with the credentials want to manage such a disfunctional water district?

  • Kathryn,
    With all the “insider information” you seem to have regarding this issue, it surprises me that you forget to mention the illegal meetings that the new board called attempting to illegally fire Mr. Sherrill. If you regard his behavior of following the rules and reminding the board of those same rules as “rude” then maybe you should take another look at your own character before pointing the finger at someone else. Plus,I am not sure if we are talking about the same Mr. Sherrill. I’ve known the man and his family for over 20 years, and I’ve never known the person you have described.
    Despite the fact that your “insider information” regarding public records is probably a blatant lie against the man, you might want to recheck your facts. Those new board members who you seem to back so openly will probably be behind bars before long, along with most of the crooked Rio Water employees.

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