I was doing some research on the “Outside Place of Use issue” when I re-discovered some public records documenting the sudden resignation by EMERY ROSS shortly after being elected to the LAKE DON PEDRO COMMUNITY SERVICES DISTRICT BOARD OF DIRECTORS in 2005.
EMERY ROSS was elected in November 8, 2005; Oath of Office sworn on December 19, 2005, and resigned January 4, 2006 when he personally submitted a written resignation with an effective date to the LDPCSD office.
These first five (5) communications were received in the office on January 4th 2006 and addressed the following issues:
- Notice of resignation and effective date
- Ross name plate not present on the dais in front of his chair
- ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) request for sensitivity training policy (unknown who made the handwritten notes, likely office staff or board member)
- Request that his board packet be the same color as those of other directors, and,
- Request for new Staff reporting format with required signature.
These submitted, and office stamped, communications are pretty much self explanatory. Regarding number #4 however, if you have never attended a Board Meeting you would have no idea that Emery’s packet was often printed on color paper, usually light blue as I recall, because it made reading easier. (This “different packet” has been brought up a number of times by meeting attendees curious if Director Ross was reviewing the same material as the rest of the board and audience.) No big deal in my mind. I did a little research on the subject and discovered various colors are in fact of great assistance for folks with certain reading and comprehension difficulties.
The paper color should never have been an issue in the first place (if is was), for that is a very easy accommodation, but I do understand concern over some of the difficulties with special text and font style formatting and printing of all the packet information since much of it is comprised of only copies of the originals. Reformatting charts, graphs, financial spread sheets, etc. would also naturally be much more difficult – if such requests were even made. (Jeez, I couldn’t even get some of those old LDPCSD files to print correctly in their provided format! lol)
ANYWAY, I have a much better understanding now of why so many special requests have been made through the years such as #5 above for a brief “heads up” staff analysis of subject information. Actually, I think all of us would probably appreciate brief accurate reports of complex matters versus spending much time reading massive amounts of material. (Weekends before Monday meetings for me were always occupied with reading packet material and I admit it ticked me off when I repeatedly observed precious board time being wasted with numerous questions needlessly asked due to the material obviously not having been read and/or understood.)
Unfortunately, reading and comprehending enormous amounts of district information is often required to adequately prepare for discussion and well informed fact based responsible decisions. An unfortunate and common result of not doing this is a director who votes on advice and/or the desire of others.
Whether or not the presence of such “hidden disabilities” (as Ross referenced) should be disclosed to the voting pubic by those seeking election to a public agency director position is something I am neither qualified or inclined to address right now. Suffice it to say it would appear to be a personal decision for the individual candidate based on their self confidence in ability to responsibly discharge the duties of that position on behalf of the public. This obviously assumes the honest motivation for serving the public and not themselves.
Unfortunately, as discussed in some of the information on the subject, reading and comprehension difficulties are too often incorrectly, and unfairly, interpreted by others as indicating laziness or apathy for the work. Sensitive subject, diverse opinions, we have all likely experienced this on some level, enough said.
I really liked the below display that was outside the Mariposa County Board Room near the exit (maybe it is still there) which illustrates the amazing contributions by those with challenges. Old post photo:
Diversity is good. Sure would be a boring world if we were all the same huh? Reminds me, ever see that commercial, I think it is about estate planning or something, where it involved a lady making clones (copies) of herself in order to complete a lot of demanding work yet their private interests outside of work varied and subsequently required special financial retirement arrangements – the point of the advertisement? Anyway, every time I catch myself wishing I could clone four more “me” to get more work done around here I realize even if I could, it would likely result in a five way argument with nothing getting done at all! LOL!
Regardless of the reasons for any ADA based requested accommodations (which again are fine) the actual reason for that resignation appears to be quite different than concern over committing insurance fraud by being an elected official, but you can decide that for yourself.
REFER TIME LINE: Mar 29 2008, NEW “ROSS RESIGNATION EXCUSE” TWO+ YEARS LATER
OK, here are the ROSS January 4th, 2006 communications which do help explain some contradictory information.
My best to you and yours, Lew