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Clerk-Recorder Interviews: Renee Ramirez

Posted by Former Blogger Chris Emami on April 2, 2013

3:46 PM– Now for another interesting interview. Get that popcorn ready because Renee Ramirez is up.

3:51 PM– It’s on like Donkey Kong.

3:52 PM– In her introduction she talked about her background working for Orange County since 18 years old. Her family and way she lives her life outside of her position in County government.

3:54 PM– She talked about a lack of communication between Tom Daly and the Board which she says that she has tried to make an improvement upon. She is referencing a lot of documents that I do not have access to as she refers to sole-source contracts.

3:56 PM– Supervisor Nguyen asked about her intentions to run for re-election. Ramirez stated that she does plan to run for re-election if appointed although she doubted she would run if not appointed.

3:57 PM– Supervisor Nelson asked about her running for higher office. Ramirez stated she has no other political aspirations. As a response to a follow-up technology question she stated that we are the most innovative Clerk-Recorders office in California.

1:52 PM– Supervisor Moorlach asked his series of questions:

1) Are you receiving a public pension?

No.

2) What is your highest level of education?

A certificate in business.

3) Have you been involved in litigation with the County of Orange?

No.

4) Have you ever been subject to any political investigation?

No.

5) Have you run for office before? If so, how many times and for what offices?

No.

6) Do you believe that the office of Orange County Clerk-Recorder needs satellite offices?

She does believe that we need satellite offices but was unsure as to how many.

4:01 PM– On a follow-up Fund 12D question she talked about a building being purchased and how the project is on hold. She went into more inside baseball factoids about what Fund 12D is and her thoughts on the process from being on the inside.

4:03 PM– When asked about the Jordan Brandman report she stated that Tom Daly is the one responsible for this issue. She stated that she has gotten approval to use the reference of the wife of former Orange County Clerk-Recorder Gary Granville.

4:05 PM– Supervisor Bates asked about the financial management. Ramirez responded that if issues such as the Brandman Report come up she will not issue progress payments until work product is reviewed if I understood her correctly.

4:06 PM– She talked about her willingness to communicate directly with the Orange County Board of Supervisors. In response to a question she replied that she does not believe it was a mistake to purchase building 433.

4:08 PM– In an answer to a question by Supervisor Nguyen she believes that it is important to communicate with the Board of Supervisors on issues before they become a problem. Nguyen expressed concerns about not being informed about the Brandman Report and the research for a Vietnam War Museum in Garden Grove.

4:11 PM– Supervisor Spitzer asked about her having to defend the positions of somebody she worked for and referred to himself taking the opposite position when he worked for The Orange County District Attorney. He pointed out that she signed the contract with Brandman. He asked what her process would be in terms of having somebody in charge and why was Brandman given more money.

4:14 PM– She explained the organizational chart in the office of Clerk-Recorder and she signed the contract because she was directed to do so by Tom Daly.

4:16 PM– On a follow-up question regarding how she would deal with scandal she stated that she is not saying Tom Daly did anything wrong but she wouldn’t do business the way that he did. Nelson followed up that e-mails were sent through Ramirez and not Daly. She replied that her job was to be basically a facilitator.

4:18 PM– On a Nelson follow-up question she said that she submitted the paperwork for payment based on receiving completed drafts even though Nelson stated that payment was only required if it was completed.

4:20 PM– The wheels are coming off the bus. It appears that she signed an extension in January and if she throws Daly under the bus she might be able to salvage this.

4:22 PM– She claims that she did not sign the document extending things in January and Nelson pointed out that somebody else did sign it. She claimed that Daly is responsible for this and Nelson contends that he didn’t work there any more at that point.

4:23 PM– Her reason for not ending the contract was to avoid wasting $22,000 and not getting any product. She then appeared to say that he in the end delivered on his word to do the project.

4:25 PM– Spitzer is asking about all the consultants that have contracts with the OC Clerk-Recorders office and is pointing out items that he sees as waste.

4:29 PM– Spitzer asked about her philosophy going forward. she says that she will take responsibility for everything that takes place in the office.

4:30 PM– In closing she is trying to salvage this by talking about the good things that her office has done over the past few months along with what she has done in the past prior to taking over.

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