Tag Archives: Maria Rock

When will they get some proper management at Chico Airport?

30 Jul

I’m blowing off this morning’s Internal Affairs discussion on liquor licenses because I’ve already heard what Kirk Trostle has to say: “I want more MONEY!”  I also got a kick out of the editorial posted this morning – it’s a – MAY- zing how many things me and Dave Little agree on, for two people who’d rather eat a Dodger Dog than be civil to one another. 

I will be taking in the Airport Commission meeting at 6pm, however. I know, 6pm, and no hors d’oeuvres or nothin’, that is gauche. 

But tonight, Brian Nakamura is going to give the report I been dying to ask for – where the airport gets it’s revenues and how it’s spends them. 

The airport is so neglected, it’s ridiculous. And when they do pay attention, it’s “we want service to Disneyland.”   Nobody seems to realize what an incredible manufacturing area it is, and how much it would mean to our city to get some big employers out there. In the old-old days, a manufacturer wanted to be next to the river, not only for hydro-power, but for transportation – raw materials in, processed goods out! Then it was the railroad tracks. Today, it’s the airport. We have one, but we have not set it up as a very good business zone. In fact, a friend of mine who owns a small manufacturing operation at the airport tells me constantly – Chico is business hostile. “They treat anybody who wants to start a business like they’re some kind of ‘Sugar Daddy’.” 

The biggest problem at the airport is Maria Rock, who owns the fueling station. The city spent hundreds of thousands of dollars protecting Maria Rock’s business from Danford Jay, an airport business owner who says he was given a verbal go-ahead by the city to open his own fueling station, but later told the Rocks have the exclusive rights.  Airport users complain that the Rocks run the fueling station a la Gomer and Goober, but staffer Debbie Collins told me she write these complaints off as “anecdotes” and refuses to act on them. 

We’ll never know if their daughter, city attorney Alicia Rock, had anything to do with it – who cares – the whole thing was inappropriate, and just another symbol of the mismanagement of our town. 

So, I’m  going down there  tonight, I’ll fill you in. 

And don’t forget, First Sunday meeting, August 4, Chico library, 9am. 

Airport Lawsuit: $300,000+, and ticking…

8 Mar

I’ve had a lot of interest and questions about the post I made about the airport lawsuit:


Alot of people I’ve spoken to have asked how much this whole thing is costing the taxpayers. Stephanie Taber actually went to the trouble of putting that question into writing and handing it to $taff. When you give them a written question, they have to give you some kind of response. 

Here’s their response:

Through the end of December 2011, the City has spent approximately $130,000 on
outside attorneys since the lawsuit was filed. The Assistant City Attorney has spent more than 1500 hours on the matter, plus additional hours spent by the City Attorney. Additionally, approximately $38,000 has been spent on non-attorney/salary costs (i.e. depositions).”

I don’t feel this is a particularly straight answer – notice how they just give us the amount of hours on the assistant city attorney, no mention of actual money, and then “additional hours spent” on the part of the city attorney, Lori Barker. Barker’s time is worth about $126 an hour. So, let’s make a ballpark shot – the assistant city attorney is making at least $90 an hour, maybe more, so we’ve paid him over $100,000, just to work on this case. Plus, he can’t litigate, so they have to hire the outside attorneys at $130,000. And that’s just so far.

My source has told me that Mr. Jay has a pretty big “Sue-sue-sue Ya!” budget, he’s not sweating this thing. And a little bird told me, he’s probably going to win, eventually. That’s what all the stalling is about, apparently. That, and two city attorneys lining their nest with the green stuff, and a third city attorney illegally and inappropriately using her position to help her parents also line their pockets. 

 While Alicia Rock is not working directly on the case, she is a member of $taff, and in my opinion, something stinks here. The whole thing is outrageous. 

Old Yiddish proverb: When the fish stinks, it’s the head of the fish that stinks. In this case, as in all cases before the city of Chico, the stinking head would be our mayor, Ann Schwab.