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?
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.