Oceano CSD director can stay on board for now, judge rules

Judge Charles Crandall ruled against an emergency order Wednesday that would have kept newly appointed Oceano Community Services District director Lori Angello off the board until the matter could be addressed at a future hearing.

Director Pamela Dean filed a lawsuit Monday as a private citizen, claiming Angello was illegally seated on the district’s board.

Dean claims the board needed three votes to seat Angello and said that two other candidates had the same number of votes as Angello did.

Angello received a 2-1 vote in February with directors Jim Hill and Mary Lucey voting in favor and Dean against. Director Vern Dahl recused himself because he’d previously done business with Angello.

Dean claims that director candidates Felma Hurdle and Charles Knollenberg also had majority votes, taking into consideration directors who abstained from voting.

Dean alleges that an abstention is the same as a “yes” vote under Oceano district policy (Jim Hill abstained in Hurdle’s case; Dean and Hill both abstained in Knollenberg’s case, she said).

Angello replaced director Barbara Mann, who resigned at the end of the year.

The district’s opinion is that Angello has been correctly and legally seated, General Manager Raffaele Montemurro said.