My liberal colleagues might say no way, there is nothing worse.Ã‚Â I believe those who suggest Sheriff Carona resign while he fights the public corruption charges against him are wrong.Ã‚Â There is good reason they are wrong.Ã‚Â But first let me clarify, I do believe that Sheriff Carona turning over day to day operations of the department to his command staff under the direction of Undersheriff Jo Ann Galisky while he fights the charges against him is the right move, and for the good of the department and the people of Orange County he should move forward with that plan.Ã‚Â
As Undersheriff Galisky said in an interview with the Register on Saturday, Ã¢â‚¬Å“the commanding officers are trained to function without the sheriff under many circumstances, including emergencies such as terrorist attacks or an earthquake, or when the sheriff is traveling.Ã¢â‚¬ÂÃ‚Â The command structure of four assistant sheriffÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s and an undersheriff will allow for stability and a continuity of leadership while Carona deals with the serious distraction of the federal indictments against him.
So back to what could possibly be worse than Sheriff Carona remaining in office?Ã‚Â Simple really, the current Board of Supervisors appointing a replacement is worse.Ã‚Â
The current Board, at the urging of Supervisor John Moorlach and his Chief of Staff andÃ‚Â Propaganda Minister Mario Mainero, has chosen to pursue a foolÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s errand of attacking the proper and fairly negotiated pension benefits of Orange County Deputy Sheriffs. It is unlikely that the current Board would appoint a successor who does not support their attack on the men and women of the SheriffÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Department.Ã‚Â This would only serve to dishearten these valuable public servants, cause a reduction in recruitment of new deputies, and possibly cause a mass exodus of qualified sworn officers to other agencies.
I am not offering an opinion here on the merits of the allegations in the federal indictment against Sheriff Carona.Ã‚Â These are serious charges, and if proven true, he would be removed from office. If they are true, and only Sheriff Carona knows the answer to this question for sure, then he should spare himself and those under his command from the embarrassment that would come from conviction while in office. However, if he truly believes the allegations are false then he should at a minimum step aside from the responsibility of day to day operational command while he fights those allegations.
For me however one thing is painfully certain.Ã‚Â It is unacceptable for the Orange County Board of Supervisors, who have demonstrated such disdain for public employees and specifically the men and women of the Orange County SheriffÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Department, to appoint a replacement for Sheriff Carona. No matter what, I cannot think of anything worse than that.