Dear Indio Neighbors:
On March 5th, the City Council hosted our annual Employee Appreciation Dinner for our employees. Even though it was on a work night, we had approximately half of our city workforce show up for the dinner, along with the City Council, several City Commissioners, our City Clerk Cynthia Hernandez – and the most important people in our lives – spouses, fiancées and significant others. I am sharing this only because I am so blessed to be associated with my co-workers. They are truly dedicated to serving the Indio community and are very proud of that. They work hard, they care about the public, they care about one another, and they deserved the recognition that they received at the dinner.
Every year, we honor employees on their 5, 10, 15, and 20-year anniversaries with the city and at the dinner we celebrated a 40-year anniversary! Forty years with the City of Indio. Can you imagine that?
Sgt. Bob Stanfill with the Indio Police Department began working for the City of Indio in January of 1979. By show of hands, it appeared that about 30% of our employees at the dinner were not even born yet when Bob started. He talked about how things have changed. The year Bob started, the City of Indio police station was brand-new and a thing of pride. Today, of course, it is woefully inadequate to the size and sophistication of a modern police force. We have dispatchers and detectives working out of mobile trailer units! (We plan a new police station and are working toward commencement of design in the next year.) Beat officers in 1979 used to have to stop and use pay phones when they wanted a “secure” line on which to conduct business. We also heard testimony about the inspiration Sgt. Stanfill has provided to younger officers through the years. Bob turns 70 in two weeks. The good news is that he is still going, and we look forward to ongoing inspiration from him.
At the appreciation dinner, we also celebrated the 20-year anniversaries of five other city employees:
· Jason Anderson – Code Enforcement Supervisor
· Jorge Ayala – Sr. Water Utility Worker
· Jose Ibarra – Police Officer
· Felicita Lugo – Community Programs Assistant (Senior Center)
· Anita Parks – Police Records Specialist II
I have been working in local government myself for over 40 years, and have worked with many different city staff teams. I know a good one when I see it. The City of Indio employee workforce is at the top of the class – for competence, for caring, for authenticity, and for problem solving. We know that Indio has great opportunity in our future. We know that as city employees our performance on the job will make a difference to how people perceive living, working and investing here. It takes very little on my part to manage this group. They are self-motivated and obviously, I am very proud of them.
By the way, we are a very lean organization from a staffing standpoint. We have only 250 employees in a city of roughly 90,000 population. (This does not count the firefighters we employ thru a contract with Riverside County and CalFire.) With only 250 employees serving 90,000 people, this would be among the lower “staff per capita” ratios in the state of California for a full-service city. However, we do not complain about that. That is our reality and we make it work. Just consider the many programs and service functions we provide with this small staff:
· Police and Fire teams
· Patrol, Investigations, Quality of Life, Dispatch, Records, Tactical, Community Relations, Public Information
· Fire Suppression, Prevention, Inspection, Emergency Medical
· Emergency Management
· Special Events team (including huge festivals)
· Code Enforcement team
· Public Works teams
· Engineering, Capital Projects, Street Paving, Fleet Services, Facilities, Graffiti, Traffic Signals, Storm Drains, Parks
· Indio Water Authority teams
· Engineering, Field Services, Customer Services
· City Hall/Indio Water Authority/Indio Police Public Counter teams
· Community Development teams
· Planning, Building Plan Check & Permitting, Building Inspection, Public Art, Housing/HUD Programs
· Finance Office teams
· Accounting, Budgeting, Revenue Collection, Business License, Payroll
· City Treasurer/Investments
· Information Technology team
· Human Resources & Risk Management team
· Economic Development and Public Information team
· Community Services teams
· Teen Center, Senior Center, Golf Course, Animal Services, Special Events, HOA Relations, Film Permits
· City Management, Legal Services, Legislative Services, City Clerk
So people will ask me, “What does a City Manager do?” My job is to do my best to support the efforts of those who do the all of the above. I love my job.
Indio City Manager