Chris Lopez named acting city manager
■ By Tom Jones / Contributed
The city council has placed City Manager Allen Parker on paid administrative leave while the council continues the process of his evaluation following a closed-door session Tuesday night, March 12. The council appointed Deputy City Manager Chris Lopez as acting city manager. Parker was appointed city manager in 2017.
Hemet’s history of losing city managers for one reason or another is bleak and high turnover actually was a subject of concern in the State Auditor’s report after the state stepped in a few years ago identifying Hemet as an at-risk city.
Parker’s predecessor, former City Manager Alex Meyerhoff, left in the middle of his contractual term after the council apparently lost confidence in him. Between 2017 and early 2018, the city lost a number of key people including Councilman K. Paul Raver, City Engineer Steven Latino, Deputy City Manager/Finance Director Jessica Hurst, City Engineer Derek Wieske (after two months), and Administrative Services Director Joy Canfield.
If you count interim managers, since 2000, no fewer than 10 people have been able to call themselves the city manager of Hemet. The only one who was actually fired, however, was Wally Hill in March 2015.