The Morning Report
Subscribe now. Get smarter tomorrow.
Oceanside’s internal investigation into claims made against elected City Treasurer Victor Roy has revealed that only three of the allegations made against him could be substantiated.
The report released Thursday, however, found that Roy violated some of the city’s codes of ethics and conduct, as well as its personnel rules and regulations, and recommended that the city discipline or retrain him.
“The allegations concerning the City Treasurer were promptly and thoroughly investigated by an impartial, independent investigator,” City Manager Jonathan Borrego said in a statement. “That investigation is now complete and the report, which speaks for itself, has been publicly released. The City accepts the conclusions reached by the investigator and will implement the recommendations.”
Roy did not respond to a request for comment.
The Allegations: Treasury Manger Steve Hodges in a June 6 email accused Roy of being negligent in city investments decisions, illegally asking for campaign donations, viewing inappropriate materials on a public library computer and more. The city brought on the Zappia Law Firm to investigate each of these claims except for the allegations regarding financial investments because the city determined that no individual official had control over those decisions. The report did acknowledge that the loss of interest income that Hodges was referring to in his email was mainly caused by outside market conditions.
Claims that Roy wasn’t performing his job duties, improperly used city offices for personal use, and harassed and retaliated against Hodges were not sustained, according to the report.
There was “insufficient evidence” to sustain the allegation that Roy illegally asked Hodges to donate to his campaign, the report said.
Hodges’ claim that Roy was making derogatory comments about recently deceased employee Becky Salvatierra was sustained and confirmed by others in the Treasury Department. So was the allegation that Roy improperly discussed Hodges’ job performance at a public meeting.
The investigators also confirmed that Roy was viewing inappropriate materials at the Mission Branch Library. Voice of San Diego previously confirmed this through a public records request.
The report details that Roy was “dishonest” about why he was viewing nudity on the public library computer when he said he was investigating a citizen concern that city library computers were not filtering inappropriate material. He was also dishonest when he accused the librarian of lying about asking Roy to leave after catching him viewing the materials, the report said.
The report concluded that the issues between Roy and Hodges escalated when Salvatierra passed away and Hodges had to perform her duties, as well as his own. This prevented him from taking leave time off work to be with his new baby, though the option for paternity leave was available to him.
This was also around the time that Roy was seeking to become more involved in day-to-day treasury operations, which added to Hodges’ stress as he believed Roy was inserting himself into daily operations but was unqualified for the job, the report said.
Hodges did not respond to a request for comment.
Voice recently reported that Hodges was convicted of burglary as a teenager for stealing an Oceanside city credit card and thousands of dollars from Home Depot, his former employer, as part of a gift card scam.
Public records also revealed that Hodges had a habit of complaining about colleagues and public agency employers in the past, resulting in huge payouts.
Hodges is still employed by the city of Oceanside, but plans to resign by Nov. 1. However, he will be placed on administrative leave for 12 months, according to his separation agreement, and will continue to receive his base rate of pay.