At the Greater Golden Hill Maintenance Assessment District (MAD) meeting on May 19th, most of the members spent the entire 90 minutes in protest to the hiring of a project manager without their consent. Some members on the MAD Advisory Committee -- in charge of overseeing and implementing maintenance projects in the areas of South Park and Golden Hill -- were upset with the Greater Golden Hill Community Development Committee’s (GGHCDC) decision to hire a person for the full-time position without their knowledge, despite being given a number of applications to review.
The infighting amongst the board members started with the announcement of the new employee, “I’m happy to announce that Alia Kanani’s first day will be on May 21st,” Laura Stangel, MAD board member whom also serves on the GGHCDC, said at the meeting. “She has a Bachelor’s in Environmental Studies and a Masters from SDSU and I’m sure she will make a great addition to the team.”
“Well, how much are you paying her?” MAD committee member Bill Hilsdorf asked. “You hire someone and you don’t know what you are paying her? I’ve been negotiating deals for 40 years and I’m very pissed off that I was shut out of this process.”
Hilsdorf wasn’t the only one upset. All but three members appeared frustrated about the process and confused as to their overall responsibilities as board members.
“I’m disgusted by how this whole process went on behind our backs,” said board member Lisa Vella. “And I’m totally embarrassed that other people knew that someone was hired before I did, and I sit on the board!”
The debate was so contentious that chair of the committee, David Skillman implemented the Robert’s Rule of Orders- a formal method to conducting meetings where each person speaks when called on and only have three minutes to respond.
The debate lasted so long-one member actually got up and left the meeting- that several pending items to be reviewed by the board were postponed until the next meeting. The board, however, did reach a solution. A motion was made at the end of the meeting to establish more communication between the MAD Advisory Board and the Community Development Committee, although, no specific details regarding how that would occur were given.
MAD’s next meeting will be in two weeks to discuss more possible solutions. The meetings are open to the public and are listed on the Greater Golden Hill Community Development Committee’s website- www.goldenhillcdc.org- under the Clean, Green and Safe link.