A day after the Riverside County District Attorney filed bribery charges against two developers and the former Mayor of Palm Springs, the current Mayor and longtime City Manager showed up for an interview on KESQ where they claimed that no one could have had any idea that Steve Pougnet was allegedly taking $375,000 in bribes from a couple of developers in return for getting their projects passed.

“That’s an important question, how does this happen at City Hall, I’ve racked my brain day after day since this occurred, I take this very seriously,” said City Manager David Ready.

“Whatever occurs outside of City Hall, unbeknown to city council or staff based on these charges, those are things that are not going to be found in the city’s checks and balance system,” said Ready.

Yup, just the kind of detail oriented guy you want to seriously overpay to keep an eye on what’s going on in your city.  As the man who was in charge of the Palm Springs while the alleged crimes were happening, it’s nice to see that Ready accepts zero responsibility for letting it happen on his watch.  But yeah, he takes it “very seriously.”

Seriously though, how could he not have seen the red flags?

Should staff have figured it out? The former mayor did report that he earned more than $200,000 from developer Richard Meaney. Did that sound an alarm??

“Whatever occurs outside of City Hall, unbeknown to city council or staff based on these charges, those are things that are not going to be found in the city’s checks and balance system,” said Ready.

Guess that is why he gets paid the big money.

And what about the current Mayor? Well, he seems to think that everything at City Hall is just hunky-dory now.

“Nothing in those allegations had anything to do with our city manager, our city attorney, or council members who were on council when this happened,” said Palm Springs Mayor Robert Moon one day after charges were announced against former Palm Springs Mayor Steve Pougnet and developers John Wessman and Richard Meaney

No one else being charged with a felony is a seriously low bar to set for running a city.

The Mayor even tells John White of KESQ he is stoked that John Wessman, also charged in the PouGhazi case, has stepped down from his development company because Wessman’s son-in-law, Michael Braun, is easier to work with – because, yes, the city is still working with that company on the projects that may have been approved by the city based, at least in part, by bribes allegedly given to the former Mayor.

With these guys in charge, Palm Springs is fucking doomed.

You can watch the interview here – but, you may want to pour yourself a glass or two of something alcoholic first.


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