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Lopez-Maddox to Run for O.C. Public Administrator

The former state assemblyman and recalled Capo Unified trustee wants back in public office.

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.

Nancy December 13, 2012 at 02:48 AM
I see he is back to his "Lopez-Maddox" appellation. That's right, the "Lopez" is from his wife's former husband, isn't it? So, it is not his surname, nor even his wife's maiden name. Utterly ridiculous way to pander to the hispanic vote.
Ken Lopez Maddox December 13, 2012 at 03:15 AM
My father's family is almost entirely hispanic. My wife was never married to anyone named Lopez.
Andromeda December 13, 2012 at 03:47 AM
Ok, now since you are on the topic - was your dad's birthname "Lopez"? Please confirm or deny. From where did your name "Lopez" originate? Thank you in advance for your reply.
Don Schultz December 13, 2012 at 01:36 PM
This is a matter of integrity and honesty. He was recalled from CUSD for a reason.
Ken Lopez Maddox December 13, 2012 at 02:44 PM
Yes Don, there was a reason. I put the students ahead of the teachers' union.
concerned parent December 13, 2012 at 04:49 PM
He never should have been recalled. Our district would have been in much better financial shape--and our kids getting a better education--if he and Winsten had not been recalled and had retained a majority of the board's votes over the so-called Kids' First (union-backed) candidates. (Note: I've never met Mr. Lopez-Maddox or had any correspondence with him. But I have a brain and have seen what has happened to this district because of kowtowing to union demands at the expense of kids' education (laying off teachers, unconscionable class sizes, cutting of academic and extracurricular programs) all to maintain unsustainable teacher salaries.
Nancy December 13, 2012 at 05:18 PM
Fair enough, Mr. Lopez-Maddox. But I'm still interested in your answer to Andromeda regarding the origin of "Lopez" in your family history.
shelly December 13, 2012 at 06:48 PM
concerned parent, Class sizes went up when Lopez-Maddox was on the board and teachers were laid off and programs cut. Mr. Lopez-Maddox voted to award his campaign supporters district money instead recusing himself like 3 other trustees did. He should have recused himself because of the conflict of interest whatever the vote should or should not have been.
Jane Lambson December 13, 2012 at 07:20 PM
Shelly: For the umpteenth time, Mr. L-M did not have legal standing to claim a conflict of interest. The suit was filed in 2008, before he was seated. Yes, he tried to avoid having to vote on the settlement, but the CUSD attorneys said he had to vote one way or another. You keep repeating the same half-truth over and over. You are starting to sound like Chris Korpi's parrot.
shelly December 13, 2012 at 07:48 PM
Jane Lambson, Then why was Sue Palazzo who was elected at the same time as Maddox able to recuse herself?
shelly December 13, 2012 at 07:53 PM
Jane Lambson, "Capistrano trustees authorized that agreement Sept. 15 in a 4-0 vote, with trustees Ellen Addonizio, Larry Christensen and Sue Palazzo abstaining from the vote." Tuesday, September 29, 2009, Capo Unified pays $653,350 to settle 'enemies list' lawsuits, By SCOTT MARTINDALE,The Orange County Register
Jane Lambson December 13, 2012 at 10:34 PM
I am not entirely sure, but I think it has something to do with having a quorum to vote on matters. Remember, Bryson voted for it too, and she ran on the same ticket as Addonizio and Christensen. And Jack Brick also voted for the settlement, and he was elected in 2008. Perhaps somebody with more knowledge of the matter can contribute to this dialog. Regardless of the legal standing, do you really feel that the settlement was a political payback to his contributors? Would you have rather seen him and the others vote “no” and then have it go to trial? A $10M judgment was just levied against CUSD for a wrongful death action. Juries love to hand out other people’s money, if they feel the plaintiffs have been wronged. Couldn’t something like that have happened in this situation? What would you have said then, Shelly? Why wasn’t Jack Brick attacked after he voted for the settlement? This was nothing but a political witch hunt against LM and Winsten.
Green Mavin December 14, 2012 at 12:13 AM
Ken Maddox has never directly responded to the numerous questions about the artful change to his name. The only answer that is clear to the voters is that they wanted him removed from the CUSD Board. He has a couple of supporters who defend his actions, but the results of the recall election speak volumes. He cannot be trusted. He is not wanted. And he is, for some reason, hiding behind a series of name changes.
shelly December 14, 2012 at 03:18 AM
Jane Lambson, I do not feel that Trustee Bryson or Brick should have voted either. They were supported by these families and they voted to award them money. This is a fact. Three trustees abstained because of conflict of interest which they should have. They all had a conflict of interest. I am not involved in any decisions made by any organization. I check things out for myself. I am a parent of children who attend CUSD schools. I volunteer, try to attend board meetings, talk to other parents, read, and stay involved in my children's education.
Dawn Urbanek December 14, 2012 at 04:31 AM
From Shely- "Class sizes went up when Lopez-Maddox was on the board and teachers were laid off and programs cut." Shelly Classes sizes go up every year because that is used to pay for everything the CUSD budget cannot. We have the highest class sizes in the nation.
fact checker December 14, 2012 at 05:27 AM
Dawn, You meant to say that California has the highest class size in the nation, not CUSD solely. This all began decades ago with a lack of education funding, which, in CA is 47th in the nation.
shelly December 14, 2012 at 04:09 PM
Dawn, When our state (we the people) spends less per child then most other states and keep cutting the education budget every year then that is what happens. And, Dawn, it is not the employees fault or the unions fault that the budget keeps getting cut.
shelly December 14, 2012 at 04:13 PM
And Dawn, our district gets less per child.
Capo Parent Too December 14, 2012 at 05:53 PM
He did write a blog piece about his name, but it was so vague it didn't really explain where Lopez came from. It was rather ODD actually.
Mike February 22, 2013 at 11:48 PM
Why not just disband the existing PA office. They have had a relentless history of problems, i.e. grand jury complaints. You can only blame the head person so much. After Mr. Williams, the last PA "resigned," that small band, about five, of PA staff was left intact. It was and is the staff that isn't cutting the mustard. The elected official doesn't do the work. They say the law requires this office exists. Fine put it under some agency where oversight is provided. There was no oversight the. There is no oversight now. The lack of accountability assures their issues have and will continue.

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