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Brian Dennert Has Questions For Ventura City Manager Rick Cole

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This is the third entry in my new feature Brian Dennert Has Questions. I am asking questions of elected officials, staff members, and activists. Sometimes the questions will seem odd but I am trying to ask questions that they don't normally get asked that will reveal more about their approach to government.

This time I have questions for Ventura City Manager Rick Cole. The Ventura City Manager has a great blog and shares his thoughts on Facebook also. Regardless if you are a supporter of Rick Cole we should agree he is accessible.

City Manager Rick Cole:

Where have you traveled domestically and internationally that has influenced your views on local government, planning, and transportation. Can you share with us a few examples. Feel free to send me a picture to post.

You can post your answer here or send it to me to post.


Brian Dennert

Until Rick Cole answers all other comments will be deleted to keep this entry on topic.


You won't see any comments here from Rick Cole, Brian. He was instructed by the City Council not to be traversing the state making politically-motivated statements and commentary. He's a City Manager not an elected official. Apparently, Cole, who used to be the Mayor of Pasadena before he went into city administration, cannot resist getting into the middle of these local political battles, seeming more like a policy-maker than a policy implementer.

Well, the problem is, of course, that he ends up stealing the spotlight from the City Council members he works for, which isn't a real good idea if you value job security. Thus, we will be hearing much less from Mr. Cole that involves taking sides on a political issue. He was smart enough to accept the free house that was given to him by the City Council when he was hired. I assume he will be smart in this regard as well.

Where has Rick Cole taken "political" sides?

Oh, let's see, where do I start?

What about the 911 fee that he fought tooth and nail for, even after it was obvious that it was a complete failure?

What about any development project that the City actually gives serious consideration to? He will infuse his "New Urbanism/Smart Growth" ivory tower theories into the project, which invariably heaps additional costs onto the project. But, he doesn't care. It's not his money. He has a four of the City Council members (Bill Fulton, Carl Morehouse, Brian Brennan, and Christy Weir) sold on these dumb and expensive planning requirements, which is all he needs to win approval. How much more political can it possibly get?

He advocated and engineered the closure of the immensely popular Wright Library and a fire station on the east end of town, which resulted in slower response times for emergencies that occur at that end of town, which he could care less about. It's all about his little science project (the Downtown) where he steers all the money in the budget.

Need I go on?

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