July 2019 Official Word


Official Word

July 2019

Volume 20, Issue 7


  1. President's Message
  2. CCAC Administrative Contacts
  3. Professional Development Update
  4. Events Calendar
  5. Newly Designated
  6. CCAC Election
  7. Region 14 Director's Message
  8. Member Spotlight - Region 1
  9. Sponsors







































































































































































































































































































































































































City Clerks Association of California www.californiacityclerks.org

CCAC President's Message
Stephanie Smith, MMC

I saw a meme on Facebook last week that pointed out it was only six months until Christmas. It made me laugh. Clerks are fascinated by dates, aren’t we? 10-Day public notices, E-113, E-88, 120 days to collect recall signatures (if you’ve got more than 10k but less than 50k registered voters), etc. Dates play an important role in our jobs, so it’s really not so weird that I was fascinated by the six months until Christmas. Besides, it was Buddy the Elf telling me, and who doesn’t love Buddy the Elf?

So here’s a date for you – Happy New Year!  For virtually all public agencies in California, July 1st marks the start of our new fiscal years. New budgets go into effect, new programs can start operating, new positions can be filled. For CCAC it’s no different. While our board year runs from League of California Cities Conference to League of California Cities Conference (Usually September but this year October), our fiscal year runs July 1-June 30.  I’m happy to report that the Board met several times in June, using Go-To Meeting and teleconferences, to review and approve the new CCAC Operating budget.  We have a balanced budget of $437,865.  The approved budget will be posted on the CCAC website in the coming days, and remember, just like your agency budgets, this is a living, breathing, document. Amendments and adjustments will continue to be made throughout the year. One of the things I’m looking forward to is the end of the year “true up” where we see what’s left after making sure all our FY 2018-19 invoices are paid. Right now we have a significant fund balance, and I want to see how we can put those funds to use, with more training, reduced training costs, etc.

As my time on the board is getting closer to the end, I wanted to highlight how important it is that committed and determined members step up and run for CCAC office. Did you think all this magic just happens?  No, we’ve got to Create Our Own Magic! We got to be responsible for things like hosting amazing conferences and educational workshops. We’ve got to volunteer to man the booth, if you will. We’ve got to serve on committees and represent Clerks on the League of California Cities board. We’ve got to do it. And when I say “we” I really mean “you”.  Because come November, I’ll join the ranks of the Immediate Past President’s Has Been Club. Of course you’re not getting rid of me – Clerking is my profession, Clerking is my life. I will still train with the MMC Academy and TTC, I still will facilitate Athenian Dialogues, I still will respond to your Listserv questions. But it’s almost time for First VP Patrice Olds to take the reins, and someone else to join the President’s Club by running for Second VP.  That person needs to come from the Northern Counties, as shown on the nomination forms. Will you be that person?

It’s not just the presidency, by the way. Nominations are currently open for several positions, including many Region Directorships. This is a great way to start serving your greater CCAC family. And you get to work with people you likely already know, your local region clerks. Have you thought about running for office? Do you want to become more involved? If yes, then please check out our nominations article from Nomination Chair Leilani Brown in this newsletter. Nominations are due July 17th so you still have plenty of time.  CCAC needs you.

So have a little summer fun, Clerkdom, and go create some magic!

Who Do You Call for CCAC Administrative Questions?

CCAC began a partnership with our association management firm, Smith Moore & Associates (SMA), over three years ago in order for them to do the administrative work of the association, including collecting and paying bills, balancing the books, producing financial statements, processing mail, answering phones, and assisting us with managing our member’s needs on a timely basis.

The Board of Directors made this move because all the board members are full-time working clerks – and you know that means we already have a pretty big job that requires many extra hours of work. We were concerned that, in spite of our best efforts, it was taking us too long to respond to members’ requests for invoices, payments, and basic membership information. We thought we could do a better job by using experts in their field. So, we hired people who are bookkeepers to do bookkeeping work, instead of clerks who have some experience – but it is not their trained profession.

We have been learning much about each other’s business over these last few years and are working on making our partnership even stronger as we move forward. SMA was hired to be that friendly face of CCAC to our members. If you have a question about your membership status. Call them or write them. If you need a copy of an invoice or need to correct an invoice – call them or write them. Wondering where your reimbursement is? Call them or write them.

So how do you contact them?  All of their contact information is on the CCAC website on the Contact Us page. You can reach them by sending an email or calling (916) 336-2706 from 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.

Your Board members are all here to serve your needs, and of course we want to hear from you. Just know that for basic services and questions, it is probably quicker to go to SMA directly. If you have questions or concerns, please contact 1st VP Patrice Olds. We are always interested in improving our member services.

Professional Development Update 
Shawna Freels, MMC


An epic increase to the CCAC scholarship budget has taken place this fiscal year, with the addition of $10,000 to support the Education Course Scholarship Program. Previously budgeted at $3,000 per year, this program that supports members to attend educational programs such as Nuts & Bolts, New Law and Elections Seminar, CCAC Annual Conference and Athenian Leadership Dialogs was in need of a proper budget to support the number of applications submitted each year.  The CCAC Board was quick to respond to the call for more funding, and increased our annual budget for the Education Course Scholarship Program to $13,000 per year.

CCAC scholarships are awarded twice per year, Round I in June and Round II in November. Our two major scholarship programs are the Institute Scholarship Program, supporting Technical Training for Clerks and the Master Municipal Clerks Academy, and the Education Course Scholarship Program.

Prior funding of Education Course scholarships allowed CCAC to issue only 10 awards each year. With the increase to our budget this new fiscal year, the Professional Development Committee was able to award Round I Education Course scholarships to 26 CCAC members!

In total 70 applicants were awarded a CCAC scholarship in Round I - 39 awards through the Institute Scholarship Program, and five awards from the Pat Hammers Scholarship fund. An unprecedented 138 applications were submitted for Round I.  With this big plug of new funding, CCAC has awarded $25,550 this first half of the fiscal year to further the educational and professional development of our members.

The month of July has traditionally been the one month educational programming seems to go dark for CCAC.  Not in 2019! The Netfile 2019 Giveback to the City Clerk Community Series is being held in Ontario July 16th and in Mountain View July 17th. NetFile is offering FREE Educational workshops comprised of two sessions: a morning session on Work-Life Balance and an afternoon session on Public Speaking. Two IIMC points have been awarded for each session offering four IIMC points for the full day.  Space is limited. If you haven’t registered already, hurry and send an email to Netfile. You won’t want to miss it!

Events Calendar

CCAC Education Workshops

The Ralph M. Brown Act: Everything You Need to Know but Didn't Think to Ask
August 9, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. - Merced City Hall
Click here for more information.

Building a 3-5 Year Roadmap for Implementing / Update Technology
August 9, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. - Shafter Police Department
Click here for more information.

City Clerk Dashboard - The Meaning, Intent, and Purpose Behind the Laws Administered by City Clerk
August 14, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. - Baldwin Park Arts & Recreation Center
Click here for more information.

Athenian Dialogues  

Becoming by Michelle Obama
Facilitated by Randi Johl, MMC
July 26, 2019 at 9:00 a.m.
Hosted by City of Manteca
Click here for more information.


The Zookeeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman
Facilitated by Patrice Olds, MMC
August 23, 2019 at 9:00 a.m.
Hosted by City of Santa Clarita
Click here for more information. 


Free Workshops - Netfile Gives Back

Ontario - July 16, 2019
Click here for more information.

Mountain View - July 17, 2019
Click here for more information 

Visit CCAC Events Calendar for all upcoming education opportunities.

Newly Designated Clerks

Zack Beck, CMC - City Clerk, City of Escondido

Diane Germain, CMC - Deputy City Clerk, City of Norco

Odilia Gix, CMC - Deputy City Clerk, City of Lincoln

Merry Monlux, CMC - Deputy City Clerk, City of Fremont

CCAC Annual Election 
Leilani Brown, MMC, CCAC Nominating Committee Chair


The nomination period opened on May 22, 2019 for the following CCAC officers for 2019-2020:

*President – One-year term (Northern)
*First Vice-President – One-year term (Southern)
*Second Vice-President – One-year term (Northern)
*Recording Secretary – One-year term (At-large)
Communications Director – One-year term (At-large)
Treasurer – Two-year term (At-large)
Region Director – Two-year term

Note: Positions marked with an * carry out additional duties as set forth in the City Clerks Department of the League of California Cities Bylaws.

Click here for the Notice of Nominations, Acceptance of Nomination and Candidate Statement Form. The Region Director job description, along with a list and map of the regions, is also attached. Additional position descriptions can be found in the City Clerk Bylaws on the CCAC website.

The filing deadline is July 17, 2019. Submit your Acceptance of Nomination and Candidate Statement form to (and for any questions related to the process, please contact):

Leilani I. Brown, MMC
City Clerk/CCAC Nominating Committee Chair
100 Civic Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA  92660
[email protected]
(949) 644-3005

Electronic ballots will be emailed to each eligible Voting Member no later than August 6, 2019, and the deadline to complete and submit the ballot is September 6, 2019.

Please ensure that you are able to receive Survey Monkey emails (the ballot will come from [email protected] via surveymonkey.com”).  If you are unable to receive their emails, you will need to opt-in here.




Shall Sections 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 3.7, 4.2, 4.4, 5.1, 6.1, 6.3, 7.1 and 8.1, along with the introductory paragraph of Article V, of the Bylaws of the City Clerks Association of California be amended?


Proposed for amendment are Sections 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 3.7, 4.2, 4.4, 5.1, 6.1, 6.3, 7.1 and 8.1, along with the introductory paragraph of Article V, of the Bylaws of the City Clerks Association of California. Many of the amendments are proposed for the purposes of consistency with practice, technical housekeeping, and/or reference to the Board Policies. The substantive amendments include changing lifetime membership to retiree membership upon five-year membership in the Association (3.4), adding student prospects to affiliate membership (3.5), changing the position of Immediate Past President to Member Services Director (6.1), changing the terms of the Communications Director, Recording Secretary and Member Services Director from one-year to two-years (6.3), and removing term limits for Region Directors.   

Please click here for information regarding proposed bylaw amendments.

For any questions related to the process, please contact:

Leilani I. Brown, MMC
City Clerk/CCAC Nominating Committee Chair
100 Civic Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA  92660
[email protected]
(949) 644-3005

Region 14 Director's Message
Jennifer Woodworth, MMC

Summer is officially upon us, and I hope everyone is staying cool. I know I am looking forward to July Fourth festivities with families and friends, and my children started asking for glow sticks and fireworks weeks ago. In early June, Region 14 enjoyed a weekend of learning when Millbrae hosted us for a regional workshop and Athenian Dialogue. On Friday, Jolie Houston, Gilroy Assistant City Attorney and partner at Berliner Cohen, provided a very informative presentation on records laws that govern much of what clerks do: the Brown Act, the Public Records Act, and creation of an administrative record.

Jolie led us through many of the recent legal updates to the Brown Act and Public Records Act, and let us know that there is a planned renumbering of the Public Records Act coming. Thankfully, no substantive changes to the law are planned at this time. Jolie also provided suggested guidance on how to proceed with searches of emails sent both through and outside of agency accounts and gave a sample of draft language that we can send to council members when requesting they search their private email accounts. 

Participants also discussed how to avoid potential Brown Act violations that can arise among staff and electeds when briefing council members on issues that may be before the legislative body in the future. One tip I learned was to notify all newly elected members of the legislative body the day after the election (or even the night of, if possible) of their obligations under the Brown Act.

Finally, we reviewed the creation of an administrative record, which luckily many of us had not had to deal with previously. I know my previous experience involved about twenty 3-inch binders and is not one I hope to repeat in the near or distant future. The importance of what is included in the administrative record cannot be overstated as it helps show to the court all of the information available to an elected body when making a decision.

The overwhelming response from attendees was this was an extremely timely and worthwhile class with tips and techniques to help us navigate the laws we work with every day.

On Saturday, June 8th, an intimate group of eight discussed the book Cleopatra: A Life. Cleopatra was a very strong and powerful leader; however, history remembers her simply as a seductress who seduced two powerful men. She should be remembered for her skills as a great communicator who spoke many different languages, her skills at negotiations, and her leadership traits. It was a great story, full of color and life, and participants learned much from her experiences. Patrice helped attendees map out their lives, including important events, which the group shared with each other. 

On a personal note, as my term as Region 14 Director ends this fall, I want to say how much I enjoyed my time on the Board of Directors and getting to know many of you and be a part of this wonderful organization that supports clerks individually and as a profession. Thank you all for your support of me and the rest of the Board. I encourage each of you to seek out opportunities where you are able to give back to the organization. I look forward to continuing to be an active member of CCAC and seeing you at regional meetings and conferences.

Member Spotlight - Region 1  
by April Sousa

The City of Ukiah, nestled on Hwy 101 is the County seat and largest City in Mendocino County with a population of 16,036. Some notable attractions for the City of Ukiah would be visiting Vichy Springs, located just 3 mile east-northeast of Ukiah, and the many wineries nearby.

Two people keep this City running smoothly – Kristine Lawler, City Clerk for the City of Ukiah and Stephanie Abba, Administrative Secretary for the Ukiah Valley Fire Authority.

Kristine has been a part of the Clerking profession for the past 13 years – 4 years as Clerk for the Eel Russian River Commission, 2.5 years as the Deputy Clerk of the Board for the Mendocino Board of Supervisors and most recently 6.5 years as the City Clerk of the City of Ukiah. While many of us fell into the clerk life, Kristine grew up in the office environment, helping at her mother’s side with conference packets and other projects. She was entranced with the organization of it all and notes that not much has changed as she became an adult. Records have been a primary focus for Kristine as she has recently created a new records retention facility and is working on a new organizational system for the City’s records. Over the next 10 years she hopes to have all records digitized and the system working like a well-oiled machine – only then does she feel she can retire.

Stephanie has been with the Fire Authority for the past 2 years. Along with her usual clerking duties, she also keeps the records of the volunteer first staff training hours as well as the response time and pay for the volunteer and paid firefighters. Her goal is to obtain her CMC over the next 2 years, and she is well on her way, having attended several educational offerings from CCAC including TTC and regional workshops. Stephanie hopes to be able to give back to CCAC in the future as a mentor or possibly a trainer. As the Administrative Secretary, Stephanie is the clerk of the board for the Ukiah Valley Fire District and the clerk for the Fire Executive Committee. She is also the Deputy Clerk for the Planning Commission and subs in for Kristine as City Clerk when needed. 

Both Kristine and Stephanie have the opportunity to wear many hats, as their offices are basically one stop shops – this is normal for smaller communities. It creates an environment where there is always something to do, you are never bored.  If you are ever in Mendocino County, stop on by Ukiah and give these ladies a shout! 

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