Ferrera defends couple’s City Hall caper
August 22, 2014
By CCN STAFF
Two top Arroyo Grande officials discovered by emergency workers near midnight last month in a darkened City Hall were said Wednesday by Mayor Tony Ferrera to have been cleared of inappropriate behavior by an internal city investigation.
City Manager Steve Adams and Community Development Director Teresa McClish were located in the city building July 3 by police and firefighters after a 911 call from McClish’s husband, who said he was worried his wife might be in distress because of health issues. Officers then discovered a disheveled Adams walking from his office where McClish was scrambling to get dressed, police sources said.
On Wednesday, at an Arroyo Grande and Pismo Beach Chambers of Commerce luncheon, Ferrera took the microphone following the club’s featured speaker to volunteer that “the incident was looked at and followed up by the city council” which then determined no further investigation was warranted, according to several attendees of the event. Ferrera described the July 3 incident as “a personnel matter” about which he could provide no details, but added the two parties involved “have a high level of integrity.”
Telephone calls and emails to Ferrera asking for verification of his comments were not returned.
“The incident” to which Ferrera referred was the subject of a special closed session meeting by the council four days after Adams and McClish were found in what a police officer later described as “an uncomfortable situation.” Adams was described by officers as appearing “disheveled.”
After ducking two days of CalCoastNews requests for comment, Ferrara, Adams, McClish, and an assistant city attorney fed their version of events to the local daily newspaper. Attorney Michael McMahon told the newspaper he had conducted an internal probe costing $1,254, and concluded that “there was nothing that indicated a need for formal investigation” and that the officers found nothing improper.
Nevertheless, city officials told the Tribune that officers said the situation was “uncomfortable.”
Adams penned a statement published in the daily newspaper in which he acknowledged the incident “resulted in an appearance that could be easily misinterpreted.” He contends McClish and he were just biding time to allow their blood alcohol levels to diminish before they drove to their homes, because they had consumed several glasses of wine during the evening.