Former Republican state assemblyman and recalled Capistrano Unified School District trustee Ken Lopez-Maddox announced today he wants to return to public office, this time as the Orange County public administrator.
The county has been without a public administrator since February, when John Williams retired amid accusations of mismanagement. The public administrator handles the estates of people who die without a will or trust.
With a master’s in management and a 17-year career in law enforcement, Lopez-Maddox spent six years in the state Assembly after being elected in 1998.
He won election to the Capo school board in 2008 as part of a recall campaign, but was recalled himself in November 2010.
He is also a blogger at the Aliso Viejo Patch.
Orange County voters had a chance to make the public administrator’s job an appointed position but voted to keep it an elected post by defeating Measure A. The next election for the position will be in 2014.
The Grand Jury in 2009 excoriated Williams' management of the administrator office, according to the Voice of OC. The office once employed OC District Attorney Tony Rackauckas' fiancee, an issue that came up in the DA's firing of his political acolyte-cum-rival Todd Spitzer.
News agencies, including the Voice, have reported that the firing decision came after Spitzer's inquiries into the alleged dysfunction of the administrator's office, which exposed the OC government to massive liability, an outside attorney for the county said.
Finally, after legal posturing, getting locked out of his own office and private negotiations with supervisors, Williams officially resigned in February, leaving technocrats to man the office.
“I have decided to enter the race for public administrator because our county needs an official with a proven track record as a trusted public servant,” said Lopez- Maddox in a press release.
“As the public administrator, I will effectively manage the staff of technical experts charged with handling the complex financial and legal issues involved to protect the interests of Orange County citizens.”
During his tenure in the State Legislature, Lopez- Maddox was the Republican lead on the investigation of malfeasance at the Department of Insurance that led to the removal of Insurance Commissioner Chuck Quackenbush, according to his press release. He also served on the Assembly Speaker’s Commission on Police Conduct, authored the California Safe Surrender Law and received the Order of California from the Governor for his efforts on behalf of military veterans.