Going Away Party for Tricky Ricky
DESERT HOT SPRINGS, CA – After four years of deficit spending on top of several very costly mistakes – the least of which was $250,000 lost on a failed music festival – Desert Hot Springs must finally turn its attention to its finances.
Like the music the city council faced when the music festival failed, it is now time for a city council to face the music on what has been a wild five year spending party.
In true Desert Hot Springs fashion, one last party is planned for the man who just a couple of months ago proposed spending the last of the city’s savings ($4 million in reserves) in one year to keep the city spending party going.
This Thursday a group of people we call The Blind Apologists For Millions of Dollars in Wasted Taxpayer Dollars ($250,000 lost on the music festival, $250,000 lost on the Flamingo hotel deal, $1.4 million lost on the Jewish temple debacle, $1 million lost on the Palmwood scam and a $10 million favor to developer at Skyborne) will throw one more party for former city manager Rick Daniels.
The local Chamber of Commerce, which is supported by funds from the city council, is now scrambling to round up money to pay for the party. The city’s spending spree emptied the city piggy bank. There is no more money at city hall for the extravagance of snacks and refreshments that would be part of a normal official city send off.
Nobody can accuse this publication of being a fan of Rick Daniels. But nobody gets everything wrong. When Daniels appeared for an interview with KESQ News anchor Kris Long last week, Daniels said it was the city council that was to blame for the music festival mistake – not him!
How poetic is that? He reminds television viewers across the Coachella Valley and beyond that his council made the music festival mistake – and not him! – and then those same council members throw him a party for him.
The Blind Apologists For Millions of Dollars in Wasted Taxpayer Dollars group at the Chamber may be sorry to see Daniels go, but we are not. And we are not the only ones happy to see him go. Certainly most all the people that Daniels talked into investing their savings in son Ben Daniels’ Grifphon Ponzi scheme are saying the sooner he gets out of the Coachella Valley the better.
That’s the difference between the group in Desert Hot Springs that is throwing a send off party for Daniels and those Grifphon fund victims. In Desert Hot Springs where a city has been left broke they throw a party for the guy that left ‘em that way.
Like the Chamber we are also planning a party on August 29, Daniels’ last official day in Desert Hot Springs. Goodbye Tricky Ricky …and thanks for the memories!
For over 40 years Dean has been published in a variety of small newspapers and magazines. As publisher he founded an alternative city weekly newspaper in 2008 and published over 200 uninterrupted issues over 4 years to over 20,000 readers via 800 locations (and online) before selling the business.
Dean is a Master Carpenter and the author of the biography of Hilda M Gray, desert homesteader.
In 2014 he was appointed Planning Commissioner for the city of Desert Hot Springs, California.
Dean M Gray is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors and lives in Desert Hot Springs, California.