Long Beach City Council accepts resignation of city clerk

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Maria de la Luz Garcia has resigned from her position as Long Beach city clerk, according to City Attorney Charles Parkin, who made the announcement Tuesday night, after a closed-session vote by the city council.

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Following a Nov. 22 closed-session meeting to discuss what was agendized as a public employee performance evaluation, City Attorney Charles Parkin announced the resignation of City Clerk Maria de la Luz Garcia, according to Bill Pearl of LBReport.com.

“Pursuant to Government Code 54957.1, by a vote of 7-0, the council has voted to accept the resignation of the City Clerk, Maria Garcia,” Parkin said.

Councilmembers Dee Andrews and Stacy Mungo were absent when the council went into its closed session. Garcia wasn’t present during main Council meeting, Pearl said.

California Government Code section 54957(b)(1)– the section cited on the agendized closed session item– lets a legislative body hold a closed session “to consider the appointment, employment, evaluation of performance, discipline or dismissal of a public employee or to hear complaints or charges brought against the employee by another person or employee unless the employee requests a public session.”
The code also requires a local agency to “publicly report any action taken in closed session and the vote or abstention on that action of every member present.”

Paragraph (5) of Section 54957.1 requires the public report of an “Action taken to appoint, employ, dismiss, accept the resignation of, or otherwise affect the employment status of a public employee in closed session pursuant to Section 54957 […] The general requirement of this paragraph notwithstanding, the report of a dismissal or of the nonrenewal of an employment contract shall be deferred until the first public meeting following the exhaustion of administrative remedies, if any.”

In an emailed response to the Signal Tribune just before press time, Kerry Gerot, public-affairs officer for the city manager’s office, confirmed Garcia’s resignation and the council’s acceptance of it. Gerot added that the assistant city clerk will sign, certify and execute official documents.
“Civil service ceremonies will resume January 2017,” Gerot said. “City council will consider an interim city clerk at their next meeting Dec. 6. [Deputy City Attorney] Arturo Sanchez will provide oversight to the city clerk’s office until an interim is appointed.” ✦

Sources: LBReport.com, City of LB

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