By Jim Tortolano/Orange County Tribune
A showdown over the tenure of City Manager Christine Cordon dragged on for over five hours Wednesday night and concluded with a 3-2 vote of the Westminster City Council keeping her in the position.
A capacity crowd overflowed the council chambers regarding two items on the closed session agenda, one relating to the evaluation of the city manager and the other on her possible dismissal.
“I don’t want to see Christine leave,” said one speaker. “We obviously have a high quality city manager in this city. You want to see this city destroyed? What’s gonna happen if she gets booted, bought out or dismissed? You’re gonna see a morale problem with the employees in this city.”
Another addressed Mayor Chi Charlie Nguyen, saying, “I didn’t vote for you for mayor,” and implored him to support Cordon. “Make me embarrassed that I didn’t vote for you.”
If the council majority had approved her dismissal, it would have meant her successor would become the fifth city manager in six years.
Technically what happened was the council – in closed session – voted 3-2 against a motion to continue the “evaluation” to the next council meeting in two weeks and then voted 3-2 in favor of a motion to “to take no action” on the matter of dismissal.
At our deadline which councilmember voted which way on dismissal was not made officially known but Councilmembers Amy Phan West (District 1) and Namquan Nguyen (District 4) have been her most vocal critics.
The next regular council meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, July 26.