Bailey-Findley, city come to agreement

Costa Mesa is still employing former fair CEO, but she will leave before negotiating with Facilities Management West any more.

August 11, 2010|By Mona Shadia,

COSTA MESA — Is she or isn't she working for the city of Costa Mesa?

There seems to have been some confusion about the employment status of Becky Bailey-Findley, whom Costa Mesa hired as a consultant to help with its negotiations to buy the Orange County Fairgrounds from the state.

City officials late today issued a statement clarifying her status and saying that Bailey-Findley is still working as a city consultant. She will step aside once she completes her current assignment, City Manager Allan Roeder said in an interview Wednesday.

On Tuesday evening, during a special joint meeting between the Orange County Fairgrounds Authority and the City Council, an exchange between Councilwoman Katrina Foley and City Manager Allan Roeder had given the audience the impression that Bailey-Findley no longer worked for the city.

That came as a surprise to Bailey-Findley, who thought she was still employed with the city Tuesday.


Bailey-Findley, who had just returned from vacation in Europe, said after the meeting that she needed to speak with Roeder to get clarification on her employment with the city. When she reported back to work Tuesday, she assumed that she was still employed by the city, she said.

"I should've stepped up and corrected that at that moment. That was my bad judgment for not making that clear," Roeder said of Tuesday's discussion, adding that he accepted full responsibility for causing any confusion.

Facilities Management West, the real estate company that Costa Mesa is working with to finance the purchase of the fairgrounds and operate the property, had recently asked Bailey-Findley to take over as the fairgrounds' acting chief executive if the $96-million sale went through. Bailey-Findley, who served as the fairgrounds' chief executive from 1994 to 2008, welcomed the invitation to help ensure a smooth transition, but that wouldn't have occurred until the sale between the city and the state was final, she said.

In response to numerous media and community inquires following the joint meeting, the city issued its statement clarifying on Bailey-Findley's employment.

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