Conner adds more allegations against SLT


By Kathryn Reed

South Lake Tahoe City Councilwoman JoAnn Conner has added more grievances to her lawsuit against the city and City Manager Nancy Kerry.

Conner now claims:

·      The council violated the open meeting law in September;

·      She can’t get things on the agenda in a timely manner;

·      Her personal email is being blocked;

·      That rules are being created to hurt her personal business.

Who will decide this matter remains unknown. A Placer County judge is tasked with ruling on Conner’s attorney’s request to have El Dorado County Superior Court Judge Steve Bailey dismissed.

Jacqueline Mittelstadt, a one-time attorney for the city, is representing Conner.

Her accusation about the Brown Act violation reads, “In fact, the discussion was not a performance evaluation of the city manager, but rather, was simply a discussion by all present criticizing City Councilmember Conner for a variety of reasons. It is believed that this closed session violated the Brown Act. The discussion included presentation of documents and allegations of evidence against Ms. Conner by both the city manager and members of the City Council.”

This closed session was on Sept. 15. The item to be discussed was Kerry’s performance. Conner along with the other four electeds is Kerry’s boss.

Kerry on Jan. 27 would not comment about the amended motion.

As for getting something on an agenda, a councilmember needs consensus to do so from one colleague. The soonest it would be on the agenda is two meetings later. Staff also has a huge say in the agenda. The Tuesday prior to the meeting the city manager, city clerk, city attorney, mayor and mayor pro tem solidify the agenda.

Conner last fall asked for the parade policy to come before the council. With November, December and January each having one meeting instead of two, the parade policy has not risen to the top level of importance. Conner has a vested interest because she owns an event company that puts on parades.

She is also upset with what she deems a change in policy regarding public safety being part of her parades. If the fire department were to be part of the parade, that would in essence mean an elected official was benefitting from taxpayer resources, which is illegal. Police may provide an escort, as is customary any time safety is an issue.

Conner is also disgruntled with what she believes is a change in policy when it comes to her being able to put on events at city property, most notably the rec center. Last summer the council, which she voted for, agreed to alter some of the permit regulations. Because one of her events is slated to bring in more than 1,000 people it’s necessary to get a special use permit instead of a just renting the facility.

As for the email, this was part of mandate dating back to September where Conner was banned from communicating with staff in any manner without going through the city manager or city attorney.

“People should be shocked and appalled. Today they don’t like what JoAnn is saying and tomorrow it might be you. There is no due process,” Mittelstadt told Lake Tahoe News.

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Comments (29)
  1. 4-mer-usmc says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    “Conner last fall asked for the parade policy to come before the council. With November, December and January each having one meeting instead of two, the parade policy has not risen to the top level of importance. Conner has a vested interest because she owns an event company that puts on parades.”

    “She is also upset with what she deems a change in policy regarding public safety being part of her parades. If the fire department were to be part of the parade, that would in essence mean an elected official was benefiting from taxpayer resources, which is illegal. Police may provide an escort, as is customary any time safety is an issue.”

    “Conner is also disgruntled with what she believes is a change in policy when it comes to her being able to put on events at city property, most notably the rec center. Last summer the council, which she voted for, agreed to alter some of the permit regulations. Because one of her events is slated to bring in more than 1,000 people it’s necessary to get a special use permit instead of just renting the facility.”

    It is unfortunate that for the entire time which JoAnn Conner has served as a City Council Member she has never recused herself from voting on any matter that would place her in a compromising, conflict of interest position. I believe her Council participation on certain matters has been in violation of the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) since she has had the opportunity to directly benefit both financially and from a policy perspective on matters on which she’s voted, and that is neither right nor ethical. Conner’s actions have not been above reproach, and as much as I wish she would just give our small community a break from all her high drama, it’s appearing that she will never allow her sordid mess to be over.

    My opinion only.

  2. remembers when says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    The ink wasn’t even dry yet here in the comments last October when I mentioned that Mittelstadt had felt the Council violated the Brown act. I noted the similarity between her and Conner’s cases and lo and behold … who did Conner drag into the ring with her, to coach her through this? Mittelstadt. That doesn’t mean she’s going to win. It’s an “F YOU” to the city and everybody in town who thought Mittelstadt was gone for good. If you’re a female and you have a “somebody done somebody wrong song” floating in your head, please do NOT summon the beast to SLT again. I’m sure Conner reads these comments to try to gauge her next step. We shouldn’t give her any more clues here by writing commentary that suggests ways she can make things worse or better. Maybe if we just ignore her she’ll go away … eventually. But not with the City paying the freight for her legal bill. Let her fry in her own juice this time!

  3. Steve Kubby says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    As a longtime critic of the City Council, I have to side with them on this issue. Furthermore, Nancy Kerry is one of the best City Managers we’ve ever had. For all her drama, Ms. Conner will probably end up with FPPC violations and fines, while the City will end up blowing $100,000.

  4. Liberule says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    This hose beast needs to GO AWAY.

  5. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    What is happening to the 2,300+ people that voted for JoAnn Conner?

    That’s alot of voters in a city this size
    and it seems there should be a VOTE instead of all this legal, expensive, non-productive pushing and shoving at the voters expense.

  6. Hmmm... says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    I agree with Lib(gulp!) and Robin.

  7. LeanForward says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    Robin….Recalls cost money, and with her term up this next November, who cares. It’s yet another way to waste tax payer dollars. Although I too would love to see go away right now. Every interaction she has on social media or LTN has made her a lightning rod for people to hate on her. I’ve lost all respect for her.

    As for when she was elected, there were less seats available than the last election. Also next November is the presidential election. Historically there is a higher voter turn out on these years. More voter’s = higher numbers. One can hope this encourages the youth to come out an vote.

  8. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    Lean,

    How many City Council seats up for election in November?

    How long is Ms Kerry’s employment as City Manager?

    Carl R…said ‘the El Dorado County political climate is ‘TOXIC’

    TY

    P.S. I see that Atlantic City is bankrupt and people are saying that New Jersey State is going to take over.

    It looks like the City of South Lake Tahoe is bankrupt….and cronyism is rampant.

  9. rock4tahoe says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    Ok. So what demands does Joann want to make next… a new parking spot at the “airport?” A private bathroom? Stress reduction training?

  10. 4-mer-usmc says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    Robin Smith:

    You posted that “it seems there should be a VOTE instead of all this legal, expensive, non-productive pushing and shoving at the voters expense.”

    Exactly on what would you vote?

  11. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    4-mer…”Exactly on what would you vote?”

    People that work their butts off pay people that they hire/elect to study and work and know all those type questions and answers…and then when they (the hard working) ask these STUPID questions they are ridiculed and sneered at by the very people that are paid by them…well, you know, not good people.

  12. Michael Clark says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    Why can’t anyone answer questions? (Please, don’t answer, this is a rhetorical question in response to Robin’s non-answer to 4-mer’s reasonable question to Robin Smith). Robin, votes cost taxpayer dollars, too. What 4-mer is asking (I think) is what exactly would your proposed “vote” be for? You claimed that all this is costing too much taxpayer dollars and should be voted on. WHAT should be voted on?

    Forgive me for not understanding your Palinesque answer. Perhaps an example of your ballot question would provide clarity to what you are suggesting. TY.

  13. 4-mer-usmc says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    Robin Smith:

    I’m afraid I find your response confusing and I’m unclear on the point you’re trying to convey, but have an enjoyable evening.

  14. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    4-mer…”have an enjoyable evening.”

    You too

  15. careaboutthecommunity says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    So when exactly will we change out council members? Is election day Tuesday November 8th 2016? Do they actually not change places till January 1st, 2017?

  16. billy the mountain says - Posted: January 27, 2016

    Thanks for clearing that up robin.

  17. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 28, 2016

    Michael…”Forgive me for not understanding your Palinesque answer. Perhaps an example…”

    Analogies…Michael and 4-mer

    Miller Analogies Test (MAT) the way some people reason. I suggest this as a way around the Graduate Record Exam (GRE)

  18. billy the mountain says - Posted: January 28, 2016

    Identify one analogy you used and explain it.

  19. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 28, 2016

    billy…”Identify one analogy you used and explain it.”

    GOOGLE

  20. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 28, 2016

    billy…”Identify one analogy you used and explain it.”

    GOOGLE

    FYI…analogies don’t usually work for IQ<90

  21. rock4tahoe says - Posted: January 28, 2016

    Robin Smith… what the heck are you typing about? This is a comment section for a news outlet not a crisis center.

  22. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 28, 2016

    rock…just trying to answer billy’s questions! If you read the comments back you can see that I’ve threatened to turn billy into administration if it doesn’t quit harassing me.

  23. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 28, 2016

    rock…”OK. So what demands does JoAnn want to make next…a new parking spot at the :airport?” A private bathroom? Stress reduction training?

    That was your last input to the article? Are you kidding? or just being a comedian?

    Not a crisis center not a comedy store either.

  24. rock4tahoe says - Posted: January 29, 2016

    Robin… sarcasm. Joann is NOT the victim here.

  25. billy the mountain says - Posted: January 30, 2016

    Now I am expected to use the google machine to gain insight to the context of the comments of one person here.
    The thing with analogies is… if your audience doesn’t acknowledge its existence or doesn’t find any meaning in it, it is probably a poor analogy. And that is on you.
    You have no idea what my background is and how I have been rated on tests. I code for a living. You seem like the kind of person who hated Calculus and opted for a BA because of it.

  26. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 30, 2016

    billy……..”I code for a living.”

    Ever take the Miller Analogies Test(MAT)?

    LTCC offers it surely. The score is good for 5 years, though that may have changed, as the test has, over the years. Any adviser at LTCC can help you out and let you know when and where it is available.

    Per billy you Calculus haters check it out!

    This is a test, just not the one you think it is.

    P.S. August 31, 2000 by GREGORY CROFTON, TRIBUNE STAFF
    WRITER “Investigator: Zodiac Killer struck in Tahoe”

  27. BigFishy1 says - Posted: January 30, 2016

    Once again someone goes off subject to try and prove she’s smarter than everyone else. Yet she fails to make her case. BTW this is not an article about quotes or college tests. Maybe it’s time to get some fresh air again.

  28. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 30, 2016

    Fish…just responding to billy’s ceaseless attacks/questions.

    Read above comments and you can see clearly ‘who’ it is that needs some air.

  29. Robin Smith says - Posted: January 30, 2016

    Fishy…just pointing billy in the right direction so ‘it’ can get the answers ‘it’ is apparently looking for.