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Angels has yet to sign fire chief


Angels Camp has a new treasurer and clerk, but no fire chief yet.

The Angels Camp City Council did not appoint Mark Scott fire chief at last night's meeting as had been scheduled on the council's agenda.

Mayor Debbie Ponte said the city is still working out benefit details with Scott, but there are complications with his retirement benefits, in part because he is not resigning his previous job but is actually retiring as fire chief of El Cerrito, in the Bay Area.

"We don't have a signed agreement, and so we don't have a fire chief," Ponte said.

After the meeting, she said Scott has more questions for the Public Employees Retirement System. He wants to retire from his job in El Cerrito, and then be hired as a part-time fire chief in Angels Camp.

He would be the city's first paid chief.

Questions still to be answered include: Can he simply freeze his PERS retirement until he is ready to use it? If not, will a lower rate of pay in Angels Camp affect his PERS retirement fund when he is ready to start withdrawing from it?

Ponte said another complication is that PERS places a cap on hours a retired person can work, and the number of hours Angels Camp wants its chief to work exceed the cap.

Despite the complications, Ponte said she expects to have Scott on board in the fire station soon.

"We're both on the same page, it's just going to take more time with PERS," she said.

Faye Perata, city clerk, and Monica Parker, city treasurer, were sworn in. The two were appointed by the council in January.

Following the personnel discussion at the meeting, held at the Bret Harte Theater on Bret Harte High School Campus, the business turned to kindness.

With the venue changed to accommodate a larger audience and to create an inviting atmosphere for the council's annual Kindness Hero essay award ceremony, some 70 parents, teachers, friends and community residents watched as 14 students and one adult read essays recognizing people throughout the community who exemplify kindness.

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