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Letter alleges harassment, discrimination, retaliation, slander
By Kris Reilly, City Editor
Posted Jul. 16, 2015 at 12:00 PM
Updated Jul 16, 2015 at 5:19 PM

ADELANTO — A Victorville attorney sent a letter to Adelanto City Hall this week calling for the “immediate investigation and removal” of the mayor and City Council members for allegedly targeting city employees while violating the city’s charter and the Brown Act.

Attorney James A. Alderson sent the letter on behalf of former city employees Nan Moore and Mike Borja as well as current employee Belen Cordero. Alderson alleges that the employees have been victims of “discrimination based on age and sex, harassment, … libel, slander” and retaliation for being whistle-blowers.

The letter, sent to the city Wednesday morning and later obtained by the Daily Press, also accuses Mayor Rich Kerr, Mayor Pro Tem Jermaine Wright and other unnamed Council members of meeting privately to discuss city personnel decisions. The city charter bars the Council from actively participating in personnel decisions, and California’s Ralph M. Brown Act prohibits members of a legislative body from holding informal private meetings to discuss government business.

Messages left with Kerr and with Adelanto Interim City Manager/City Clerk Cindy Herrera were not immediately returned on Thursday.

In previous interviews with the Daily Press, both Kerr and Wright have denied targeting employees but have acknowledged that the newly elected Councilmen may have made some mistakes early in their tenure due to ignorance of the rules and a desire to shake things up in the cash-strapped city.

“Are accidental violations going to happen? I’m sure they are,” Wright said last week. “If you read the city charter, it’s the vaguest thing on the planet. … We never set out to target anybody.”

Alderson’s letter further alleges that taxpayer money has been used for investigations “to determine if cause exists to fire my clients.”

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