At today's 2 pm meeting of the Quartzsite Common Council, a continuation of yesterday mornings adjourned regular meeting, all members of the council except Patricia Workman followed Mark Orgeron's lead and voted to approve signing a six month contract with Laura Bruno, the former Chief Financial Officer for the Sacramento City Unified School District.
Bruno's resume supplied to the council left off in 2002, before her greatest achievement - the illegal pension scheme known as “CASA”. She is also involved with the Southwest Chapter of the American Coach Association rally at Rice Ranch in January. Records indicate they own a parcel in Quartzsite, on Emelia.
Temporary Town Manager Terry Frausto will revert to Town Clerk, and most items on the council agenda were adjorned to the next meeting, so the the new administrator could familiarize herself with them. According to Councilman Orgeron, Bruno's mission will be to audit the books and redo the town's ordinances.
Her first official act was to place Al Johnson, the towns unpopular Assistant Town Manager/Building Official on Paid administrative leave, but the actual reasons are unknown at this time. It is believed that his firing Gilbert without authorization or notifying the council or "town manager" may be the reason. Much the same as the ongoing situation with Town Manager Alex Taft, the woman Bruno is replacing for now. Citizen's are eagerly awaiting an official explanation for Taft's paid administrative leave, and the council can't discuss that, as it was handled in executive session.
Interestingly, Bruno reports that Police Chief Gilbert is not fired after all, despite the press release from Johnson. Hopefully, an official press release explaining all of this from the town will be forthcoming.
UPDATE: A press conference was held and can be viewed at: http://youtu.be/cMrRaWkUfoM