This would be embarrassing for Oceanside - story updated

City treasurer candidate grilled, but no answer

Victor Roy is frequent speaker at city council.

Victor Roy is frequent speaker at city council.

UPDATE: Brenda Moore of the UCLA Registrar's office called back three days after she was first contacted October 30 to confirm Victor Roy in fact did graduate from UCLA with a degree in geography in 1970.

What if you posted specific job requirements for a public position and the job went to the person who had none of those basics?

Cronyism? Nepotism?

Nah…It’s just the city of Oceanside.

The city treasurer is the official who oversees the City of Oceanside’s $350 million investment portfolio, an increasingly important position considering the coastal city’s ever-expanding liability for uncovered pensions.

Pension liability was cited as key reasons why the counties of Orange and San Bernardino and the California cities of Stockton and Vallejo declared bankruptcy over the last 25 years.

Oceanside’s own job description for treasurer lists “minimum qualifications” for the job, including "a degree in finance, public or business administration, or a closely related field."

The reality is that in Oceanside, city treasurer is an elected position. Those "minimum qualifications" are only requested ideals. All you need is to be an 18-year-old warm body and a registered Oceanside voter. Victor Roy has all those qualifications. And he could win the race for Oceanside treasurer.

Roy is a frequent speaker at city council meetings on various subjects. He serves on the volunteer library commission. As a resident of Rancho San Luis Rey Mobile Home Park, he participated in the successful 2012 fight for voter mandated citywide rent control for mobile home owners. Roy ran for city council two years ago and came in 6th place with 10.2 per cent of the vote.

Based on the presence of numerous Victor Roy/City Treasurer yard signs posted in the public right of way areas, Roy seems to waging a more aggressive street campaign than his opponent Dr. Rafe Trickey, the appointed incumbent.

Some of Roy’s neighbors who are infatuated with uncovering the real Victor Roy are claiming he’s lying about his credentials.

“We found out he never graduated from UCLA,” says neighbor Rosemary Marousek. “He cooked it all up.” In an email, Roy responded by saying he did graduate from UCLA in 1970 and is a member of the UCLA Alumni Association. A check on the Alumni Association’s membership database did not show Victor Roy’s name. A scan of a 1970 UCLA yearbook did not have a photo of him in that graduating class.

An October 26 article in the Union-Tribune said Roy was a retired “aviator.” Reporter Phil Diehl says he made that mistake based on Roy saying he was retired from the “aviation industry.”

“The best we could tell, he was a baggage handler,” says Marousek.

Emails to Roy asking about his UCLA credentials and what his aviation job was, were not returned. Roy has avoided answering those specific questions in candidate forums.

“He said he should be treasurer because he made a lot of successful investments, yet his candidate filings say that he had no income when he filed to run for this office,” says Marousek.

Trickey was appointed Treasurer two years ago by the city council after diabetic Gary Ernst died six weeks before the election. Ernst’s name remained on the ballot. Coucilman Jerry Kern said it was better to vote for a dead Ernst than the surviving candidate, Nadine Scott, who he claimed lacked a financial background.

Kern got his way. Dead Ernst won the election and the council ended up appointing Trickey from among ten applicants. A former community college administrator, Trickey has two master's degrees and a doctorate, and oversaw investment portfolios for agencies and nonprofits including one that grew from $10-million to $30 million under his watch.

Trickey says that whether he is re-elected or not, in the two months remaining in his current term he will urge the city council to establish additional minimum qualifications that would mandate city treasurer candidates have a basic knowledge of investment vehicles and how municipal portfolios work. He says that is a model successfully used by Carlsbad which elects its treasurer.

Since Oceanside is a charter city (as opposed to general law) the city council could ask voters to change the city charter so that the city treasurer would become an appointed position.

“There are 18 cities in San Diego County, nine of which are general law and nine of which are charter,” says Trickey. “Only two of the charter cities elect treasurers, Carlsbad and Oceanside.”

Since 2010, the value of Oceanside’s investment portfolio has increased from $150 million to $350 million.

The position of Oceanside city treasurer got nationwide publicity in 1999 when the late Rosemary Jones refused to sign off on a questionable investment scheme pushed by outgoing Mayor Dick Lyon that called for Oceanside to spend $100 million on what she claimed to be "like a ponzi scheme," offered by L.A.-based Alamin, Inc. Jones called it a “scam” and was instrumental in blocking the high-risk investment.

The Oceanside City Treasurer is considered a part-time position. It's pay is $26,582 a year. Incumbent Trickey maintains it should stay part-time.

Share / Tools

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • AddThis
  • Email

More from SDReader


I’ve prepared a City Treasurer item for a future City Council agenda. My item is a recommendation to establish “supplementary” minimum qualifications to run for and serve as the City of Oceanside’s City Treasurer. Codified in its Municipal Code, under Section 2.08.022, entitled “Qualifications of city treasurer,” the City of Carlsbad has established qualifications to run for and serve as its City Treasurer above and beyond those listed in Government Code Section 36502. The referenced section of Carlsbad’s Municipal Code states “No person is eligible to become a candidate for the office of city treasurer unless, at the time of the final filing date for election, such person has a four-year college degree in finance or business-related field and four years of financial work experience. (Ord. CS-080 § 1, 2010)”

Over time, my opinion concerning whether our City Treasurer should be appointed or elected has evolved. When I applied to serve as City Treasurer, I believed the position should be appointed. Early on during my current tenure as City Treasurer, I shifted from believing the City Treasurer should be appointed and she or he should be required to possess an array of position-appropriate minimum qualifications, to believing the City Treasurer should remain an elected position, for independent oversight reasons. Additionally, I’ve come to believe that the overwhelming majority of Oceanside citizens feel very strongly about the value of the elected nature of the City Treasurer position and therefore our voters would not approve a change from having an elected to an appointed City Treasurer. Having served as City Treasurer for nearly two years now, I even more strongly believe today that our City Treasurer must possess a series of position-appropriate minimum academic and experience qualifications similar to those adopted by the City of Carlsbad.

California Government Code Section 36502 does not restrict the ability of a charter city to require supplementary minimum qualifications for service as City Treasurer. However, it’s my understanding right now that for the City of Oceanside to create, adopt and enforce supplementary minimum qualifications for City Treasurer service a charter amendment will be required. This charter amendment would need to be approved by Oceanside’s citizens during an election. The next general election will be held in November 2020.

Although no change to City Treasurer compensation is being recommended by me, there will be a cost to place the required charter amendment on the 2020 ballot. At this time, that exact cost is unknown, but it is expected to be de minimis.

Considering the long track record of the Oceanside "Clowncil", the less power it has the better. Keeping the position of treasurer elective will enable the residents of the city to make their desires known. If/when Oceanside gets its political act together, maybe making more offices appointive would make sense.

As to Roy's academic claims, remember that it is easy to claim to be a graduate of this or that university. Not so long ago we had a member of the Tri-City Medical board who claimed to have a doctorate from some school in Orange County. No "university" of the name he quoted ever existed, and he had zero documentation of it or of such a degree! It was a total scam. If Roy did in fact graduate UCLA, it is a simple matter for him to secure a copy of his transcript and send facsimiles to anyone who asks.

It was Rosemary Jones, Mr. Leighton, not Wood.

I just heard from a member of the Oceanside Planing Commission who told me he would be happy to show me a copy of his diploma from Harvard. OK, Victor, maybe the UCLA yearbook made a mistake. Maybe the UCLA Alumni Assn. forgot to list you in its database. Please share your diploma with us.

Anyone may call the UCLA Alumni Association of which I am a Life Member, and they will verify that I am an alumnus. Only graduates are allowed to be members of this organization. I called them and verified this, and you should, too. Obviously, the reporter did not do his due diligence and at least call the Association (nor did anyone else such as Rosemarie); instead evidently, he depended upon a couple of internet searches and then reported his pitiful findings in this article in order to cast me in a bad light. Shame on Ken!

No, shame on you. Produce a copy of your transcript and make it available to anyone who asks. That is the proof of graduation--the AA can be mistaken and so can others. BTW, dude, I'm a UCLA grad myself, and if anyone ever had occasion to question that, I'd just make a photocopy of my transcript and send it along. So simple to do if you can claim the degree. The yearbook means nothing, because it required a fee and a photo to be there. The transcript is the proof.

An official transcript is a legal document. Any degree-granting institution will send a certified copy anywhere the degree recipient requests. That transcript is the final say on the grant of a degree; no other organization or reference carries the weight of the official transcript. No matter how many years have passed, the registrar of the university has the academic records of everyone who took a class at the campus. So, it would be a simple matter for anyone, including myself, to secure a copy of my transcript at any time (for a fee, of course.) No more discussion is necessary.

I did call the alumni assn. Victor. They referred me to their database and said that was the only way to find out. Your name did not show up. Also, why are you not in the yearbook? Also, why don't you have a bio like most candidtes? And why don't you tell us what you did in the "aviation industry?" You are running for public office Mr. Roy.

It seems Victor's life is somewhat secretive. How can someone running for Treasure of the City of Oceanside not know the year he graduated from College until pressured. The initial answer of somewhere in the 70"s, that does not work. When someone asked him about his background not having a degree in Finance, Victors answer was if I am elected I will take a course. Really!! How can the citizens of Oceanside feel secure with him as Treasure? Victor, why don't you answer questions directly? You yourself are the cause of the problem. Answer questions directly, not evasively and there would be no problem. What was your job in the aviation field?

Log in to comment

Skip Ad