Fluoride in citizens’ hands; Harding’s allegations denied

After more than an hour and a half of testimony, most of it against fluoridation, the MCSD board voted 4-1 this evening to leave it up to the citizens of McKinleyville to organize and get the matter placed on the ballot for voter approval if they want the substance added to the town’s water supply.

So, if folks want fluoride, they’ll need to work their butts off to get it on the ballot. Then they’ll need to convince voters to approve their measure.

No such citizens group currently exist that I’m aware of.

The lone dissenting vote was Director Jeff Dunk, who was adamant (or maybe he was Adam Ant, based on the audience’s cheers) in his opposition to fluoride. He said he favored a different motion, one that would have simply dropped the matter all together.

As for Marking’s contract, no decision was made.

As for the allegations made by former Business Manager Jim Harding in this week’s paper, Manager Tom Marking said “I’ll tell you that most of what you read in the paper is false.” And sensational.

Everything is groovy at the MCSD and Mr. Harding’s allegations are basically bullshit. (Marking didn’t use those exact words, but that was the basic message.)

Lots of questions at this point. It will take time to sort out this mess.

More on all of this in next week’s paper.



Filed under embezzlement, fluoride, Marking, MCSD

15 responses to “Fluoride in citizens’ hands; Harding’s allegations denied

  1. Oh Me Oh My

    You did not mention that President Corbett said that this is about cans of soft drinks! Unfortunately your story seems to indicate that this is some huge problem, but I have difficulty feeling that cans of Pepsi and Coke can be as big a story as you would like.

  2. Anonymous

    Every time Marking gets into a brouhaha with someone, it’s always the other guy’s fault. You notice how often his versions of reality don’t match with anyone else’s? Personally, as a ratepayer, I don’t care what or how much money it was about, the important thing is how Marking handled it. If he really forced an 11-year employee to retire because he didn’t want the possibility of embezzlement brought to the board, that is unacceptable behavior on the park of a civil servant.

    It’s really odd listening to Marking bitch about gov’t while cashing in on a $109K salary. Can you imagine him ever making that much in private business?

    P.S. Thanks to Greg Orsini and his crew for running the wastewater and stormwater treatment systems–he is the one who should get the credit for McK no longer being in violation of state water quality regs.

  3. anonymous

    If marking turned the issue over to the auditor that is exactly what should have been done. Agree Orsini does a good job, but Marking got the very large grant for the stormwater marsh that evidently is cleaning up the water.

  4. dave

    Fear and loathing cripples MSCD board as Hunter (Jack Durham) stalks secrets involving misuse of funds-
    Talking their cue from the Bush regime they are trying to discredit the bearer of truth so they can operate “business as usual.”
    Don’t you love small town politics?

  5. Mary

    I REALLY appreciate this timely report on last night’s meeting. I have been wondering how I could find out about any decisions made and here is the answer – your blog!

    Aside from the increasingly obvious conclusion that MCSD is in turmoil and one person is at the center of it, I do hope that the Board will seriously rethink the General Manager’s overly rich proposed contract. It was only 4 years ago that the district was pummeled by state budget woes to the point that there was serious talk of selling off the Library building to raise funds. How can Board members not recall this looming cloud and even consider committing so much money to such things as rich termination bonuses that are certainly non-standard for public employees? I am unimpressed by the current board membership for even seriously considering the proposed contract in this climate.

  6. flash allen

    It appears there’s much more to this “situation” than what was reported in the press. It’ll be interesting if and when the board can explain what has been going on. Sounds very interesting to say the least…

  7. jackdurham

    Dear Flash,
    When I wrote the article last week, Mr. Marking declined to comment and President Corbett limited his comments. But on Wednesday, while the board was in closed session, I interviewed Mr. Marking. And, near the end of last night’s meeting, he had quite a bit to say. Corbett spoke at length about the process involved. All of this will be reported in next Tuesday’s paper. – Jack

  8. flash allen

    Thanks Jack, and thanks for posting “happenings” on your blog – I don’t have to always wait for Tuesday…

  9. Robin

    The MCSD board is weak, but I’m hoping they’ll find the strength to do the right thing and let Marking go. This man has verbally assaulted people, lied to the press, and created a miserable atmosphere in which to work. We should not have to put up with his personality disorders. He has caused too many rifts in this community.

    There are many highly qualified people who could do this job better than Marking and for less money. I agree with Mary about our priorities. Should we close the library so Marking can make a salary that is hugely inflated? And now he’s demanding more.

    Marking is close to retirement age. Bring on someone younger. Someone we can all work with together to make McKinleyville a better place, without all the hostility and backstabbing we’ve gotten from Marking.

  10. This is GREAT Jack. Now we don’t have to go to the meetings we can read all about it right here. Does this Marking dude think he’s God????

  11. Anonymous

    These meetings should be televised like most other public meetings around here–that way McK could see for itself the way Marking carries himself. It just doesn’t totally translate into words–you gotta see it to believe it!

  12. joke of the day

    There is a problem with the MCSD board. Not one but two. Yes the meetings should be tele’vised and everyone could see the nuts up close and that the manager is a pro. Local reporting if one sided is not the service the public needs.

  13. miss manners

    The premere water project man in (the world) who lives in Humboldt County says that Tom Marking is the best water district manager in the state of Calif. He says that he works with and knows them all,that MCSD is lucky to have Marking and can not replace his integrity,experiance,work ethic or creativity, the MCSD would be idiots to let him go. Only two board members and a hand full of activists want him gone. So lets count Mac’vills idiots and try to ferret out their hidden agenda.

  14. joke of the day

    When I see the same tiny handful of advocates attacking the GM as being out of control I have to agree while ROTFLMAO. He sure is out of their control and that makes them crazy. It should make all the rate payers happy to have a GM that can do a great job and not let the fringe ellemets run rough shod over the MCSD.

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