Larry Allen receives contract extension amid Forbes dispute

January 26, 2014
Larry Allen

Larry Allen


Two days after Forbes Magazine published a commentary highlighting the high pay of San Luis Obispo County Air Pollution Control District (APCD) head Larry Allen, the APCD board approved a contract extension for the district chief.

On Wednesday, the APCD board approved a two-year contract extension for Allen that appears to show no increase in salary. Nevertheless, Allen’s salary and benefits could increase in a few weeks.

Allen’s contract states that he shall receive any cost of living salary adjustments or benefit increases granted to other APCD employees.

At the end of Wednesday’s meeting, the board met in closed session to discuss a cost of living increase for APCD staff. Even though the pending pay increase would raise Allen’s salary as well, Allen negotiated the raise on behalf of the district.

In the Forbes commentary published Monday, columnist Steven Hayward noted that Allen receives close to $250,000 annually. Allen disputed the claim in a written response to Hayward Tuesday.

During Wednesday’s board meeting, Allen stated that the Forbes commentary had absolutely no basis in fact.

“It was a factually incorrect article — very biased,” Allen said. “I’m not sure what the motivation was behind it.”

Allen’s contract calls for a yearly salary of $153,096 and $82,916 in benefits for total compensation of $236,012, according to a district staff report.

Allen also receives a $5,400 annual vehicle allowance paid in cash. When asked Friday, district finance manager Kevin Kaizuka did not state whether the vehicle allowance is included in Allen’s projected $82,916 benefit total.

In previous district budgets, Allen’s benefits were listed according to type, such as retirement contributions, paid leave, medical, dental and vision coverage and disability and life insurance. Nevertheless, the breakdown was omitted from the 2013-2014 budget.

Allen’s paid leave includes a total of 51 days annually, or more than 10 working weeks off. His contract grants him 20 vacation days, 12 holidays, one day of personal leave, 12 days of sick leave and six days of administrative leave, all with pay.

Allen can cash out 80 hours of unused vacation time annually. He can also accrue unused vacation and administrative leave and half of his unused sick leave up to 1,440 hours.

As of Dec. 20, 2013, Allen had accrued 279 hours of vacation leave, 919 hours of sick leave and 42 hours of administrative leave, according to Kaizuka.

Allen makes approximately $75 per hour, which means he has accrued nearly $60,000 in unused leave pay. Accrued pay is calculated based upon Allen’s salary at the conclusion of his employment with the district. If Allen’s salary increases, his accrued pay will, too.

When the district hired Allen as its air pollution control officer in 2002, he received an annual salary of $85,320. His salary has nearly doubled since.

The APCD board approved Allen’s contract by a 9-2 vote Wednesday, with San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Debbie Arnold and Pismo Beach Councilman Ed Waage voting against the contract extension.

Arnold said she disagreed with fee and salary increases that Allen had recommended during times of economic distress.

Waage said he opposed a clause of the contract that would extend Allen’s employment with the district beyond two years without board approval. The clause allows Allen to keep the same terms of employment beyond the life of the contract until the board either approves a new agreement or gives 14 days of notice prior to termination.

“It basically becomes an evergreen contract and never expires,” Waage said.

District counsel Ray Biering said the provision is merely in place to reflect existing law and is no different than the terms agreed to by other public employees.

“It is not an evergreen provision,” Biering said. “Evergreen provisions are no longer permitted in public contracts.”



Remember when the source of government’s authority was through the consent of the governed and the government was the servant of the citizen (hence public service)?

How times have changed.


One of the most concerning issues I see with how our local government and all of these boards and committees operate, is that they are formed on the backs of the taxpayers to impose regulation under the guise of clean air. A simple example is that there is a permit fee charged for the operation of diesel/gas engines that pump water to irrigate agriculture, there is also an emissions fee that has to be paid for the estimated hours of operation. Now, please explain to me how this money collected for permits and emissions helps to keep the air clean?

Another way they promote their self existence is through fund appropriations and redistribution of federal/state tax funds. Taxpayer monies are used to fund programs locally (which is a good thing) however these local programs have to apply to the APCD in order to receive partial funding. Here’s where I have an issue, the APCD charges fees for this process….what the APCD has done is inserted themselves as the middle man to make money. Why can’t the local organizations apply directly to the federal/state to receive funding? To me this maximizes use of the taxpayer funds.

Lastly, the dunes issue. I don’t understand how anyone in their right mind could think that by imposing a fine for blowing dust will reduce the amount the wind blows. Instead of exacerbating this issue, why not use real science, common sense and practical use of the area that mitigates the issue without forcing the public to have to take a hard pro/con stance. What about trees? They could be used as a wind block. Take a look at vineyards that are planted in high wind areas…..

Just my opinion


Clearly the time has come to streamline and consolidate County Government, City Governments, and all these small independent Special Districts in San Luis Obispo County.

We need to take a serious look at how much taxpayers money we are spending on services, departments that are no longer needed, and most of all duplication of services.

I have learned a lot reading these articles and comments.

We need to build a new model for local and county government. I have a lot of respect and confidence in my fellow citizens. Lets use this positive energy to remake oursleves into a New Democratic Engine that saves money, promotes business and jobs, and embraces technology and change.

Lets start a quiet revolution.

Mike Byrd

I agree that it’s time for some bold ideas.


A good starting point is to ask how many highly paid City Managers, Police Chiefs, Fire Chiefs, School Superintendents, Legal Services, Administrators and Special Districts do we really need in one small county.

The day of being able to afford all these duplicated layers of government has long passed.

When you look at the middle class and how wages have stagnated over the past five years we can only then begin to access the depth of the longtime financial structural problems.

All these fees and fines are just part of the last ditch effort to bring in New Taxes.

The Fire Tax in Arroyo Grande,Oceano, and Grover Beach is a Tax Bailout for Fiscal Mismanagement. Increased State and Local Sales Taxes, The Proposed Grover Beach Road Tax, Cuesta College Building Tax, are all desperate examples of a failed system. The State Retirement System will take three decades of increased funding to make it stable. How Many New Taxes can we afford?

I believe citizens are ready for a new streamlined model for local government that provides cost efficent services for taxpaters and will not attempt to micromanage all parts of our lives and private business.


Well done, good editing, thank you for making the time to do that.


Here’s a story for Cal Coast New to publish

I will add extra information about Mr. Larry Adams (funding ways to cut to pay his salary and apcb employees) but also Barbara Adams (the Buyer – Central Services Division for SLO county) who suspiciously contracted in 2008 a real low priced janitorial company contract that employees illegal immigrants. Barbara took upon herself to employee anybody so low that they did no immigrations check at all on any of the janitorial vendors, none. They checked nothing! The cleaning they hired does just that, low waged workers, unlicensed drivers and non legal status in the United States contracted by SLO County.

Cleaning location: Air Pollution Control office on 3433 South Roberto Court, San Luis Obispo

Here’s the bid:$!26+Proposals/2008/993+Complete+Janitorial+Services.pdf

Considering Larry Adams is pulling $240,000.00 a year and his office is being cleaned by illegal immigrants, looks like Barbara Adams was trying to do just that, think of their big salaries and go super cheap on contracting low low vendors.

This is part of the county schemes they do


Wow! And you have accessible verifiable information that those providing this janitorial service is employing undocumented workers, or, unlicensed drivers? And you didn’t contact INS right at that moment? Or SLOPD? No? I’d say you’re trying to play on peoples emotions rather than on fact…

There is an old saying that comes to mind right about now… Put up or shut up! And! Calling on CCN to “finish” the accusations you put forward is pretty much an act of a coward, IMHO…

Just Sayin’…


Calling INS might be productive, but come on call SLOPD, what a gigantic waste of time, they would never investigate one of their own, and would the DA do anything, of course not. they only way to get anything done would be go outside our little kindgom, far, far outside. Too many protecting each other for anything real to happen here


I was referring to those the poster referred to as “unlicensed drivers” as to calling SLOPD. How would that entail “investigating one of their own”? They would have gotten a ticket, if they were actually caught driving without a license, and the poster would have some basis of fact to support his or her accusation(s).

Like I said… Put up or Shut Up!

Just Sayin’…


Are you kidding, call in INS, they are way under staffed to call, been there and tried that, even contacted Luis Capps about it to get INS out there, they’re awful because they are too many businesses employing illegals to enforce all the companies hiring illegal immigrants state wide and second SLOPD, they cannot enforce federal law, so that’s the last place to call but Larry Allen knows because he needs his $240,000.00 annual salary so cutting any service is good for him to make more money, which it’s general services like Barbara Adams is responsible for contracting these companies for county services. Question her, she’ll deny it as always and lastly, ask her how much money the county is paying her, maybe she should be on Forbes list as well.

But the botton line is, for the county to contract venders that employees illegal immigrants is wrong, which the county is going away with it and pretending they’re doing nothing wrong, they need to be investigated and reported in and fired.


Again, Proof? Understaffed, overstaffed, what does that matter? Call them, the INS, and ask them to do there job! If you did so there would be a record of that call which would only bolster your accusations. And to use that lame ass excuse only makes your accusation harder to believe.

What was the company name that won that bid in 2008? Did they outbid you or someone you know? Maybe this is just a veiled attempt at retaliation for some idiotic idea of somehow being wronged.

As far as contacting Luis Capps to call INS? Sorry, but that’s not her job! Besides, she probably didn’t respond becasue she was as dubious about your accusations as I am and anyone else with half a brain would be.

Get a grip or show some proof!

Just Sayin’…


That wasn’t the bid you referred to in your link, just the bidding application! Where’s the actual bid with the company’s name that submitted and won the bid? Again; Put up or Shut up, please!

Six of you (so far) have put a “thumbs up” on this post, really? Based on what? Your emotions rather than fact? You Betcha! Get a grip! It’s shit like this that gets people in trouble for no good reason and takes away from any real progress in solving the real issue at hand.

While “leatherpink” calls out “the sky is falling, the sky is falling” the likes of Adam Hill and company slink right on bye to another day of their shenanigans, Good God! No wonder they aren’t at all worried or even concerned one-little-bit about any ramifications from their actions, why would they be? We’re all too busy chasing “illegal” shadows!


Just Sayin’…

Mr. Holly

hats off to Debbie Arnold and Ed Waage and shame on the rest of them. I guess we all can ascertain that the rest of the people on the Board will keep these give away programs within the cities that they come from. Where was the chair of the board on this one? Usually Ms. Fonzie attempts to keep things in line. I guess her new position has made her just one of them.


Now all we need to do is replace Mr. Gibson and possibly Ms. Ray,(if she doesn’t speak up soon) and the BOS might have a chance of getting things fixed. Finish it off by sending Mr. Hill packing next.


The writing is no longer “on the wall” It’s on a BILLBOARD


Well, that was certainly a let-them-eat-cake slap in the face to taxpayers.


We need to get salaries, pensions, and benefits under control. It will take years of funding to get CalPers and STRS solvent.


Unless Ms. Ray speaks up and says something along the lines that the contact with Mr. Allen is outrageous and if elected she will do anything she can to end Mr. Allen’s contact, (firing a must) even if it means the taxpayers will take a hit right now, (because the way it has been set up a hit is coming some day and we just need to rip the Band-Aid off right now and end things so that they can get better), and that there will be serious changes to the APCD. Without this I will find it hard to vote for Ms. Ray, and she will be seen by me as just another career politician and we have had enough of them.


Well good luck with that

Kevin Rice

Agreed. Caren Ray is part of the entrenched and will absolutely not vote against Hill.


Well we have seen it happen once on the first 3-2 since she was in office


What was the vote for? a real change or just a feel good item?

Kevin Rice

Which item, please? One does not make a pattern, by the way. Symbolism does not amount to substance.


I know it was not a standard administration item. It would have not gone 3-2. It was an item where hill lost it (meaning his composure ) but I don’t recall the item.


Is it the vote where they suspended payment for additional costs to the Los Osos Sewer Project until more information could be presented and reviewed?

Kevin Rice

The vote on that item (the one snooky156 refers to below) was 5-0. The dispute arose during discussion and was resolved by a 5-0 vote to bring the item back.


You should watch the video. It was quite entertaining as I recall

Kevin Rice

Seen it several times. Starts around 00:40:30 –