Supervisor Espinoza, Ricky Ricardo Productions, an “absent” Carlos Vierra, and The 4th of July Committee:

The following are excerpts from comments made by County Supervisor Rodrigo Espinoza at the July 18, 2017 City Council meeting as recorded on video. It is not a word-for-word transcription of his entire comments, but focuses on his comments about the recent July 4th Celebration.

There was quite a bit of “buzz” and distortion in the audio. After listening several times, this is what I was able to come up with. If you listen to the audio yourself, and find I have made any major mistakes in transcription, please let me know. I would really appreciate the help in correcting errors or filling in gaps created by the lousy audio quality I was getting.

We begin with his comments during the “County Supervisor’s Report” portion of the City Council Meeting: which began about 4:05 minutes in. After talking about the Detwiler Fire and community members’ response, he continues as follows.

Also, I want to talk about the 4th of July. It’s a good event…Livingston 4th of July, I know they had some troubles. Hopefully the Council will look at that. I was seeing about a lot of issues: with the way it’s handled. So, it’s up to you guys to decide on the best way.

I know that Ricky Ricardo is gonna do the contract with the Sweet Potato Festival. And he’s done great things on his own and whether the City takes a Percentage from, he can run it pretty smoothly and if he does the site (then ?) you might want to go that way too for the 4th of July. I think it would be great. It’s up to you guys.

During the Citizens’ Comments portion of the meeting, at about the 47.38 minute mark, first “citizen Espinoza” talks about how a person he knew was angry that Disabled Parking in the VIP Section was not free. Then he went on to say how that Parking Lot was empty because nobody wants to pay $20 for Parking.

His final “Citizen’s Comments” were as follows:

I know it’s not something we want to talk about in public. But hey, I understand about the {public (?)} And then I go into the event and the Manager of (the event). They kicked out the 4th of July Committee. Ok we (?) have a 4th of July Committee. They kicked them out.

The lady that was in charge of the event, Carlos Vierra wasn’t there. So this lady was rude with everybody: the public. And I told her-I didn’t know it was her: she was the manager. And I told her “you know what’?” I addressed her nice: in front of two committee members still there. And I addressed “You know what? I don’t like it when, we started this event years ago when I was Mayor and with Jose (Ramirez: City Manager) and I don’t appreciate when people out from out of town managing our event that kicked out our 4th of July committee…”

I told Julio. Julio called me. He got kicked out. And to me, that’s embarrassing. And I’m not trying to bring down Julio, but I said “You know what? Some things got out of hand. And if you can’t manage it (if?) you can’t get somebody else to manage it, that’s managing the location, just kick us out of Livingston whatever.”

(I’m really not sure if what comes next was directed at Julio Valadez or the City Council. You really need to watch the video for yourself and decide)

This is our community. We can’t let somebody else come in from out of our community and say “Well this doesn’t belong to the City of Livingston any more. This is our event.” I’m sorry? This is still our community. If you’re gonna be taking the business, doing business with us, you can’t be rude to our citizens: to our community.

If the 4th of July Committee can’t handle it, then we’ll have somebody else manage it. I know it’s something we don’t like to talk about in public. But we have to.