Friday, April 4, 2008

Weird Science

OK. Let me get this straight: Steve Herfert earns a bachelors degree in recreation and now he works as a "scientist" for SoCal Edison. I remember him once saying, "All I have is a bachelor's in recreation" when arguing with Roger Hernandez, who holds a masters degree in public administration, about something park-related. I remember that so clearly because somehow, Herfert made me feel guilty for holding a masters myself. From a state school, but still, it's a masters, damnit!

I don't know what Herfert does at Edison, but I did find a very interesting comment on Foothill Cities Blog that says:
  1. an marcos Says:
    October 10th, 2007 at 7:22 pm

    my favorite piece in the aritcle is where they proclaim steve herfert a “scientist”. since when is a meter reader a “scientist”?

  2. gilman Says:
    October 10th, 2007 at 7:47 pm

    C’mon….everyone knows that a meter is a piece of scientific equipment.

Oh, so he reads meters? OK. I. Get. It. Now?

Then I started to ponder Mr. Herfert's scientific skills. Somehow, he got elected a bazillion times to the City Council, even though he's kind of mean to people who don't agree with him and he convinced the city to spend more than $50 million on a ballfield, and convinced everyone that playing baseball on top of a dump is a good idea.

Oh, but my favorite of all faves is the fact that he could be so cozy with a former planning commissioner who is charged with conflict of interest and perjury and convinced at least three of his colleagues to give this guy money for his defense.

Maybe it's because this commissioner, Carlos Thrasher, did a couple of tours in Iraq and tried to resuscitate a guy who collapsed at the dais and later died. Maybe, though, and what of which I am most convinced is he simply hates Ziad Alhassen. According to Ben Baeder of the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Herfert got pissed when Alhassen didn't forgive a debt Thrasher owed him on back rent.

"It is clear that Herfert took great interest in the dispute between Thrasher and Alhassen. He wrote a letter to this newspaper on Dec. 22, 2004, laying out his concerns.

'As if the hardship on his family wasn't enough,' the letter read, 'last week Carlos received a letter from the previous landlord threatening to sue him if his full office rent isn't paid within 11 days.'

At the time, the 'previous landlord' was Alhassen, according to Thrasher.

Herfert's letter continued: 'I am seeking to raise a few bucks to help with his previous landlords (sic) demand.'

A month later, at the very next scheduled council meeting, Herfert asked the city's staff to provide him with a list of all debts owed to West Covina by Alhassen, according to council minutes from Jan. 18, 2005. During council meetings in February 2005, he criticized the city's plan to restructure deals with Alhassen. In April 2005, Herfert wrote a letter to this paper criticizing the city council's decision to redraw a contract with Alhassen."

While I sit here with a degree in English Lit and am currently working as a Human Resources manager, I can't fault Mr. Herfert for electing to enter a field that has nothing to do with his degree. According to his past of convincing people to go along with bad ideas, maybe he is qualified to be a scientist. He's working some sort of magic at least.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Excellent read on Steve Herfert. A decade of hindsight reveals the depths financial ruin that he was willing to drag West Covina into over the next decade. To say he spent taxpayer money like a drunken sailor would be disparaging to the Navy. Because when sailors run out of money, they leave the bar and go back to the ship. They can't spend any more money, because they are broke. That never stopped Herfert-Toughy-Sanderson-Lane clique.
Good riddance.
I am personally glad to see him go. He was the sole remaining common thread to the scandalous former city council, and an albatross around the neck of the city.