NewsCovering Kern County


City council in Cal City votes down proposal to cut jobs

Posted at 8:37 AM, Apr 24, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-25 09:18:31-04

UPDATE (April 25): The city council meeting in California City lasted until about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Ultimately, the city council voted down the proposal by city manager Robert Stockwell, saving multiple jobs for the time being.

The city council decided to hold a series of workshops to help with budget issues. 

The workshops will be held May 2 at 6 p.m., May 9 and 10 at 6 p.m. and May 15 and 16. 

City council members say they will hold the meetings to find budget solutions until they "fix it".



A parcel tax that was not passed by voters in California City could have "devastating" impacts on the community, according to the city manager.

On Tuesday, city manager Robert Stockwell will present the city council with a report detailing the impacts not having the parcel tax in place will have. The report from Stockwell says, "the financial impacts are devastating but unavoidable."

According to the report, the parcel tax previously accounted for about 66 percent of the city's general fund. 

In April, the parcel tax was on the ballot in California City. It needed a 2/3 vote. It failed, with only about 59 percent of voters voting in favor of it. The city has a population of 14,248. Only 1,879 people voted on the ballot. 

According to Stockwell's report, the police department will eliminate 12 of 16 sworn officers. In all, the department, which has 21 full-time employees, will only have four. 

The fire department currently has 17 members on the force. Seven will remain after cuts. 

Other changes to California City's services are spelled out in the report:

  • City Hall Operations - City Hall working hours will be limited to 8 AM to 6 PM four days per week. Public access to City Hall will be eliminated on Wednesdays and Fridays.
  • City Administration- Eliminate the HR Director. Retain City Manager, Assistant to CM and Payroll Clerk, all HR functions will be managed by this group.
  • Finance- Eliminate Budget Analyst, and Account Clerk. Retain Finance Director, Accountant and Account Clerk.
  • City Clerk - City Council meetings will be reduced to one scheduled meeting per month and public access to the city records will be limited to 3 days per week.
  • Parks and Recreation - Eliminate all programs close all facilities. Lakes and turf areas will only be maintained as a means for disposal of sewer effluent water. Senior Center will be retained based upon availability of volunteer support continuing.
  • Airport - Eliminate Airport Manager, and Maintenance Worker. Maintenance at a severely reduced level will be assigned to facilities division. Public Works Director will carry Airport Manager title and responsibility.
  • Golf Course - Turf areas will be maintained only for disposal of sewer plant effluent. No culinary water provided to golf course areas or maintenance of culinary water systems.
  • Streets - Streets and signals will be maintained only to the extent state funding is available. Emphasis will be on main roads and arterials with little if any maintenance in exclusively residential areas.

You can read the full report on the city's website

The city council is scheduled to meet at 6 Tuesday night.