Santa Clara was blessed with an early Thanksgiving present in the termination of City Attorney Brian Doyle.
This decision was long overdue and well justified. Not just because of his undying defense of Mayor Lisa Gillmor, but the spurious advice he gave the City Council. His undefendable decision to withhold an offer letter from California Voting Rights attorney Robert Rubin would have saved the city over a million dollars. His decision to appeal the court’s decision mandating six districts was another foolish blunder costing Santa Clara millions more.
Of course, Doyle was endorsed by Mayor Lisa Gillmor, though she has not discussed this endorsement. However, the rumor is that she still supported Doyle even as the Council was voting to terminate him.
What is even more disturbing is the presence of Doyle at City Council meetings. He continues to hang around offering more of his bad advice “as a citizen.” The latest example is Doyle’s caustic remarks regarding the possibility of Levi’s Stadium and Santa Clara being selected as a host for the 2026 World Cup.
Sources tell us Doyle is also in the process of bringing a lawsuit against Santa Clara. You kind of wonder if he will represent himself on that one.
The Council has begun a search for an interim attorney who has experience in working with cities.
City Manager Deanna Santana’s office is responsible for preparing the application (RFP), which outlines the responsibilities of the position. Since the Council is looking for an interim attorney, the position should have the option of limited hours and give the Council opportunity to evaluate the applicant.
However, when Santana’s office prepared the RFP, it clearly indicated the position would require 100% of the applicant’s time be dedicated to Santa Clara. This was no doubt intentional, as it would automatically eliminate about 50% of all potential applicants.
The Council has made it clear they are looking for an interim attorney and would allow for flexibility as they worked with the new applicant and observed their work, advice and capabilities.
There is little question that City Manager Deanna Santana is not a good fit for Santa Clara. Her draconian approach to management, her nepotism of former cronies to replace long-term City employees, her support of terminated Doyle, her $800,000 compensation package are just a few reasons she also needs to depart Santa Clara.
Perhaps Santa Clara will be the recipient of an early Christmas present.