By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
Reavis’ past litigiousness was used, some say, as a pretext when the city council voted to reinstate lifetime medical benefits for council members who serve 12 years and are older than 50 when they retire. Last May, Ury said the benefit was wasteful and proposed to have it removed. The issue returned in November, with the city attorney cautioning that a certain council member might sue the city if they didn’t reinstate the benefit. Ury has said Reavis had indicated she would sue, but Reavis denies it, and the council has never produced any evidence to substantiate the claim. Due to changes in policy over the years, and with Reavis retired, the only three council members who could ever possibly get the benefit are the “MUK” majority—the three votes that reinstated the lifetime benefit.
In council meetings, MacLean, Ury and Kelley never endorsed the idea that part-time council members deserved medical benefits. After dealing with the recall, though, MacLean has changed his mind.
“Look at all this stress that I have. Go out there and Google how many council members across the United States have been gunned down and killed. You’d be surprised,” he says. “When I first got onto the city council, not three months prior, there was a council member in New York. Some disgruntled gadfly person came in and gunned him down at a council meeting. At my orientation, they walked around, and they said, ‘Lance, you’ll be happy to know that when we built this city hall, when we put this dais together, there’s Kevlar in it. So if you see somebody come in and they’ve got a gun, duck, because it’s bulletproof.’ And I’m thinking, ‘What the fuck did I get myself into?’ I am a target. I have people who don’t like me. I have been intimidated. They come to my doorstep; they take pictures of my house. Most agencies have a duty and obligation to protect the people who are working for them. I’ve been elected to work for the city of Mission Viejo. I think my health should be taken care of. If I were to get murdered in a council meeting by one of these knuckleheads, you know how much life insurance I’ve got through the city? Goose egg. None.”
And if they don’t take his life, MacLean says, they’ll at least take his job.
“I’m almost positive I’ll be recalled,” he says, sounding somewhat cheerful. “Absolutely. How do you fight something like that?”