With all the coming’s and going’s in California local government, it can be hard to keep track of where your friends are or what’s happening in your neighboring municipalities. But Trackdown Managementhelps keep the state up-to-date with their newsletter.

PublicCEO presents his Picking Up the Pieces:

Eugene M. Palazzo
, 46, is the new City Manager in Crescent City beginning August 8. Previously Gene served as the Director of Redevelopment and Housing for the City of South Lake Tahoe. He has a BA from Humboldt State University and an MPA from Golden Gate University.

Bellflower City Manager Mike Egan has resigned his position to accept the appointment as Norwalk City Manager replacing the recently retired Norwalk City Manager Ernie Garcia.

Temecula Assistant City Manager Bob Johnson will become Temecula City Manager when City Manger Shawn Nelson, 51, retires at the end of the year.

Jim Starbird, Glendale‘s City Manager since 1998, will retire at the end of the year. Jim worked in Eureka, Monrovia and West Covina prior to joining the Glendale staff.

Atascadero Assistant City Manager Jim Lewis characterizes State Budget Legislation that addresses Redevelopment Agencies as “…a blatant form of extortion.” He notes that Dictionary.com defines “extortion” as “the crime of obtaining money or some other thing of value by the abuse of one’s office or authority.”

Kristine Guerrero of the League of California Cities points out that we screwed up by giving props to Senator Alan Lowenthal who “did” vote to eliminate RDAs under ABX1 26 and he voted for the “extortion bill” ABx1 27. Senator Lowenthal did not heed the wishes of the Mayors of the cities in his district.

Gonzalo Vazquez of the Cypress staff was seen at Petco Park in San Diego wearing an Angels’ uniform jersey and hat at the July 16 Padres/Giants game. His wife Vickie Vazquez and a number of family and friends joined Gonz in San Diego.

According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), contrary to the law the City of Escondido is endorsing Christianity by allowing invocation speakers to use language that includes “Heavenly Father,” and/or “Jesus.” David Blair-Loy, legal director for the local ACLU chapter, contends that allowing moment-of-reflection speakers to invoke “Jesus” is a clear violation of the constitutional separation of church and state. Clay Phillips is the Escondido City Manager.

Calexico Interim City Manager Oscar Rodriquez has dropped the “interim” from his title as the City Council vote 5-0 to appoint him City Manager. Oscar has served as Interim City Manager since last February following the resignation of former City Manager Victor Carrillo.

When Oakdale City Manager Steve Hallam was dismissed in April, Fire Chief Mike Botto stepped in to serve in an “interim” capacity as Acting City Manager. Retired Atwater City Manager Gregory Wellman, 64, who previously served 35-years with Merced County, including 5 as County Administrator, has been appointed Oakdale Interim City Manager effective August 1st.

David Brennan has served as the City Manager in Nevada City since the retirement of former City Manager Gene Albaugh. David is a former Nevada County Administrator and previously served as City Manager in Sebastopol.

Rocklin City Manager Rick Horst says that the City “…is proud to be home to William Jessup University.” University President John Jackson described plans for a $17 million campus expansion at a recent groundbreaking ceremony at the Sacramento area’s only residential four-year private university.

Former Vernon City Administrator Donal O’Callaghan, 55, was sentenced by Superior Court Judge Craig Veals to probation and 200 hours of community service after he pleaded guilty to conflict-of-interest charges that involved arranging a contract for his wife Kimberly McBride, who was not charged with any offense.

Grandpa Wade McKinney, Atascadero City Manager and CCMF President, was in Corona recently for a family get together with five-generations to celebrate Hannah McKinney‘s first birthday. Wade says that he is “lovin’ this grandpa stuff.” We know where he is coming from.

Indio City Manager Dan Martinez received excellent reviews following an annual evaluation. Dan has been Indio City Manager for nearly a year. He replaced the retired former City Manager Glenn Southard.

Bill Edgar is the Interim City Manager in Sacramento and Betty Masuoka is the Interim Deputy City Manager. Bill is a former Sacramento and Pleasanton City Manager. Betty was with the Sacramento from 1981 to 2004. It appears that CRA Executive Director John Shirey is the frontrunner to be appointed Sacramento City Manager.

California’s Supreme Court has ruled in a Manhattan Beach case that the city can ban grocery stores and other retailers from using plastic bags without doing a full environmental study on the subsequent increased use of paper bags. The Manhattan Beach City Manager is David Carmany. San Carlos Assistant City Manager Brian Moura said that a full environmental study could cost $150,000. Retired

Irwindale City Manager Steve Blancarte, 56, pleaded guilty to misappropriation of public funds and agreed to repay $5,303 in restitution and $5,000 in fines. Steve’s attorney John Tyre said that Steve decided to plead guilty due to cardiac health issues. The charges came as a result of City bond meetings in New York where the City delegation attended a number on Broadway plays along with Yankee and Mets games. Others charged continue to fight the charges.

Scott Jacobson is the Director of Leadership Giving in the Office of Development and External Relations for the School of Policy, Planning and Development at the University of Southern California…USC. You may email Scott at: jacobson@usc.edu.

Dismissed June 8, former Riverbank City Manager Rich Holmer, 64, has retired after a 36-years of working in local government. He had been Riverbank’s City Manager since September, 1995. A City investigation report regarding alleged inappropriate conduct has been released.

Former San Diego Deputy Economic Development Director Scott Kessler, laid-off, the city contends, as part of mid-year budget cuts in 2008, filed suit in July, 2009 alleging he was fired because he was a “whistle blower.” The suit continues through the judicial process. Scott contends he was ordered to favor a certain contractor.

Santa Rosa Principal Financial Analyst Brian Cochran has joined the Novato City Staff as the City’s Finance Manager. He replaces Debbie Lauchner, who took a position in Vallejo during the spring. Brian has a Master’s degree in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His BS is in mathematics and economics from Ohio State University. Novato City Manager Michael Franks is a former Santa Rosa Assistant City Manager.

Santa Clara City Manager Jennifer Sparacino recommended that the City deny NFL Hall of Fame Quarterback Joe Montana‘s request to lease two city-owned plots next to the planned new 49ers’ stadium for a commercial project. Joe Montana and his business partners, including former 49ers’ owner Eddie DeBartolo, Jr. proposed to build a luxury hotel, upscale restaurant and a sports bar on the seven acre site. The City Manager wants to give all developers a change to submit their best mixed-use proposals.

Former Anaheim Mayor Curt Pringle has resigned from the California High Speed Rail Authority Board. Reportedly, the Attorney General’s office conducted a conflict of interest investigation regarding serving as Mayor and the Authority Board Chair at the same time. Curt served as Anaheim Mayor from 2002 until 2010.

The City of Atascadero is committed to building community by fostering an outstanding quality of life with excellent public service, stewardship of the environment, preservation of our heritage and promotion of economic prosperity.

Folsom City Manager Kerry Miller, 60, has announced his retirement effective October 15.