Mitnick: Good Governance Demands Vigilance

In September 2012, Thousand Oaks City Manager Scott Mitnick penned an op-ed piece for the Ventura County Star shining a light on mismanagement/ criminal conduct in several Los Angeles County cities. He then issued a call-to-action for California city governments to adhere to the highest level of ethics and managerial excellence.

For decades, California led the nation with more than 400 highly professional, ethical and transparent council-manager form of government cities.

Over the past few years, this form of government has experienced challenges in a few cities unparalleled in our state’s history. A series of articles have been written about what appears to be mismanagement and criminal conduct in a handful of southeast Los Angeles County cities. Those regarding the city of Cudahy are especially troubling.

While these articles represent a very small proportion all cities (less than 1 percent), they nevertheless reflect a serious failure of ethical and open local government.

The primary mission of the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), and its California affiliate (Cal-ICMA), is to promote professional, ethical and transparent local government.

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An Education on Devolution

In March 2016, Scott Mitnick composed a piece for the International City/County Management Association’s (ICMA) Public Management magazine addressing the transfer of municipal services from national to local control in the UK and its dynamics moving forward.

Ryan Eggleston, township manager, South Fayette, Pennsylvania, and I were honored to represent ICMA at the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives (SOLACE) Annual Summit held in Bournemouth, England, this past October. The main topic of the three-day event was devolution or the transfer of municipal services from national to local control.

What was interesting about learning of this major undertaking is how this topic has come full circle since I was a student at Bristol University more than two decades ago. The challenge going forward will be to what extent London will provide local government access to revenues needed to provide the services that are being pushed back to local authorities.

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Fall 2012 Message from Cal-ICMA President Scott Mitnick: Good Governance Demands Vigilance

Scott MitnickAn excerpt from Scott Mitnick’s Fall 2012 Message as Cal-ICMA President:

“Back to school” season is a perfect time for professional development.  The Cal-ICMA Board of Directors has been working diligently through the summer to provide you with a number of great training opportunities this fall.

  • ICMA’s 98th Annual Conference is just around the corner. The conference will be held at the Phoenix Convention Center from October 7-10.  California’s own Magda Gonzalez serves as Chair of the Conference Planning Committee.  This year the conference will feature both career tracks for a variety of management levels as well as theme tracks.  The League of California Cities/City Managers’ Department and Cal-ICMA will be hosting a state reception on Monday, October 8, at the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown. Specific location and time will be listed on the conference agenda.

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Spring 2012 Message from Cal-ICMA President Scott Mitnick: Adding Value to Membership

Scott MitnickAn excerpt from Scott Mitnick’s Spring 2012 Message as Cal-ICMA President:

The Cal-ICMA Executive Board has had a busy season including participation in an ICMA West Coast region leadership summit together with representatives from Alaska, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington, and representation on a key ICMA initiative to take a close look at the financing of the association. I want to share important information from these sessions as we promote Cal-ICMA and continue underscore the value of membership in ICMA.

In the coming months, Cal-ICMA will be ramping up efforts to support the Life, Well Run campaign to raise awareness of the many wonderful contributions professional managers make to local governments and communities.  California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington ICMA representatives have pledged to raise $155,950 over the next five years. The West Coast leaders will be announcing this commitment at the ICMA Annual Conference in Phoenix, Arizona, this October.

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Message from Cal-ICMA President Scott Mitnick: Planning Ahead

Scott MitnickAn excerpt from Scott Mitnick’s first Message as Cal-ICMA President:

I have been very energized in these first months as president of Cal-ICMA for 2012.  I believe that this past year we laid the groundwork for new strategic directions for this increasingly active consortium of professional managers and organizations that support professional local government management in California.

Late last year, several Cal-ICMA members met at two strategic planning meetings to discuss Cal-ICMA’s progress in past years, review our program specific activities, and examine any opportunities that may add value to your Cal-ICMA membership. Our goal is to ensure the highest quality of product being offered to our members and associates.

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