Thursday, February 02, 2006 | A few weeks ago, the staff here at Scott Lewis on Politics, or SLOP, had its collective imagination piqued.
When Mayor Jerry Sanders was elected, we immediately recalled that one of his first promises was to ask for letters of resignation from 300 high-level city employees. After reading the letters, he promised, he would decide which of them to accept.
We wondered what those letters would look like. After all, what do you say in a letter of resignation when you don’t want to resign and you don’t know if you’ll have to? We could only imagine. So we filed a public records request and promised to update readers when we found out.
We created a mock up of what somebody might say. It went like this:
Mayor Jerry Sanders
202 C. Street
San Diego, CA 92101
Re: Your Request for 300 Resignations of High-Level Managers
Hon. Mayor Sanders:
I resign. Please keep me on the job, of course. But I resign. Effective, umm, I don’t know when – because I don’t want to leave. Here’s my resignation, however.
A high-level city employee
Turns out we weren’t so far off. Wednesday, on my desk and stacked as thick as a phone book, were the letters of resignation of 158 city managers. That’s, of course, short of the 300 Sanders promised. It appears that there weren’t as many managers as he, or his campaign managers, thought. Plus, none of the managers of public safety employees were asked to turn their resignations in.
Also, interestingly, the increasingly independent-minded City Auditor John Torell refused to, or neglected to, turn his resignation letter into the mayor. But what’s going on with him deserves a column of its own.