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RIVERSIDE COUNTY: Lake Elsinore mayor joins Jeffries’ staff
Newly elected Riverside County Supervisor Kevin Jeffries, left, has hired Lake Elsinore Mayor Bob Magee as a planning and land-use advisor. The two are pictured at The Diamond Stadium in Lake Elsinore on June 5, 2012.
BY JEFF HORSEMAN
Published: December 12, 2012; 01:33 PM
Lake Elsinore’s mayor is among eight people who will join Kevin Jeffries’ staff when the former assemblyman becomes a Riverside County supervisor next month.
Bob Magee will be Jeffries’ district director for planning and development and will be the primary staff member responsible for planning, land-use and transportation issues, according to a Jeffries press release issued Wednesday, Dec. 12. He has been on Lake Elsinore’s City Council since 2003 and was named mayor for the fifth time Tuesday.
“(Magee) is one of my oldest friends and has a wealth of experience in the private sector, transportation, and planning,” Jeffries said in his press release.
Magee will remain on the council, Jeffries Chief of Staff Jeff Greene wrote in an email.
Magee joins other local elected officials who work for one of the county’s five supervisors. Temecula Councilman Ron Roberts is on Supervisor Jeff Stone’s staff, as is Jurupa Valley Councilman Verne Lauritzen. Robin Hastings and Darcy Kuenzi, who lost council seats in Moreno Valley and Menifee, respectively, work for Supervisor Marion Ashley.
Jeffries defeated 20-year incumbent Supervisor Bob Buster in the Nov. 6 election by about 1,300 votes.
Supervisors have the power to choose their own staffs. While Jeffries will have a staff of eight, at least four who worked for Buster are leaving, according to Greene. Buster had five staff members plus an intern, Greene said.
The county Human Resources department tries to match employees leaving a Board of Supervisors office with appropriate jobs in other departments, according to county spokesman Ray Smith.
Three people who worked for Jeffries when he was an assemblyman are following him to his new office, including Greene, who was his chief of staff in Sacramento. The others are Kristen Huyck, who will be a legislative assistant specializing in education and other matters, and Kerstin Justus, Jeffries’ scheduler/office manager.
Two are being retained from Buster’s staff. Elena Bautista will be Jeffries’ lead secretary and help with health and social services issues, and Kayla Benites will continue her role as a part-time legislative intern.
The staff also will include Thomas Ketcham, a legislative assistant dealing with law enforcement, political reform, Hispanic outreach and other issues. Robin Reid is leaving Stone’s office to become Jeffries’ health and human services advisor.
Jeffries will tie Supervisor John Benoit for having the most full-time staff members – seven. Stone and Ashley each have six and Supervisor John Tavaglione has four, according to Smith, the county spokesman.
Exact salary information for Jeffries’ staff was not available. But supervisor’s chiefs of staff earn between $91,224 and $124,811 a year, according to the county human resources website. Legislative assistants earn between $58,939 and $107,602. Board assistants’ salaries range from $19,889 to $71,637.
Greene earned just over $90,000 a year as Jeffries’ chief of staff in Sacramento while Huyck’s and Justus’ state jobs paid them just under $53,000 and $36,000, respectively, state records show.
Jeffries, a Lake Elsinore-area resident, owns and manages rental properties through a family business. The Republican served in Sacramento from 2006 to this year. As supervisor, he will represent a district encompassing most of the city of Riverside as well as Wildomar, Lake Elsinore and Canyon Lake.
He takes office Jan. 8. Supervisors make $143,031 a year and are entitled to a $550 monthly car allowance, health insurance and other benefits. Jeffries has said he won’t take a taxpayer-funded pension.
Also contributing to this report: Staff writer Jim Miller, firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow Jeff Horseman on Twitter: @JeffHorseman