SACRAMENTO COUNTY – Local activists are circulating a letter seeking support for their call to fire a County executive in the wake of accusations of financial mismanagement and personnel harassment.
Last month, Board of Supervisors Chair Phil Serna and District 2 Supervisor Patrick Kennedy asked CEO Navdeep “Nav” Gill to resign after he hosted a meeting without following COVID-19 safety protocol resulting in employees testing positive for the virus or needing to be placed in quarantine.
Serna and Kennedy declared “no confidence” in Gill after it was discovered that he authorized spending more than 80 percent of CARES Act funding that was earmarked for coronavirus response for Corrections spending, specifically the Sheriff’s Department.
At the time Gill and others on his CARES funding committee claimed the swap was done to “stabilize the budget” and keep service cuts at bay.
Countless residents have since called into Board of Supervisors meetings and submitted emails calling for Gill’s ouster. The latest community letter was circulated along with a flyer with the headline “Gill’s Got To Go,” in an effort to get the Board to actually place the issue on the agenda for the Tuesday, November 17 meeting.
“Over the years, County Executive Gill has prioritized secrecy over transparency and communication, isolation over partnership, and internal politics over community,” the letter reads. “ We can no longer stand by and allow Nav Gill to operate with impunity and intimidation as he has done for years as such behavior only hurts the residents of our beloved County.”
People were asked to add their names to the open letter via text or email. Those who support the letter include Black Women Organized for Political Action, Sacramento, Organize Sacramento, Sac Change Coalition, Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) Sacramento, the Anti Police-Terror Project Sacramento, and Decarcerate Sacramento.
Area residents have for months been calling out Gill’s mismanagement of taxpayer dollars, his misaligned, detrimental priorities, an inability to attract, utilize and retain staff, and for cultivating fear and hostility to avoid transparency.
Supporting the latter claim is a list of County employees who have filed formal complaints against Gill. The list includes Sacramento County’s Public Health Officer Dr. Olivia Kasirye. Dr. Kasirye, who is in charge of the County’s response to COVID-19, says she came forward because Gill’s actions have not only threatened her job, but also the public department’s ability to provide services in the midst of a crisis.
By Genoa Barrow | OBSERVER Senior Staff Writer