News

Palo Alto's assistant city manager to depart for San Jose

Pamela Antil helped oversee labor negotiations, fire department restructuring

Palo Alto Assistant City Manager Pamela Antil will step down from her post later this month to take a similar job in San Jose.

She told the Weekly she will start her new job for the City of San Jose on May 5 and said she is "really excited about the opportunity."

"Palo Alto is still near and dear to my heart," Antil said. "It's just a really great opportunity."

Antil joined Palo Alto in 2010, having previously served as assistant city manager in Novi, Mich.; Ann Arbor, Mich.; and Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. As City Manager James Keene's second in command, she has been at the forefront of various complex initiatives in Palo Alto, including the restructuring of the city's Development Center, labor negotiations with public-safety employees and structural changes in the Fire Department. She has also filled in for Keene at numerous council meetings.

According to a statement from San Jose, Antil will provide "day-to-day operational oversight of all city services and departments" and "guide and coordinate the work of deputy city managers and department directors to achieve quality service delivery and citywide organizational and policy goals." She will also serve as the highest-level deputy to City Manager Ed Shikada. In a statement, Shikada praised the city's selection of Antil for the position.

"Pam has outstanding experience and a national reputation as a leader in city management, and she will add genuine strength and strategic perspective to our team," Shikada said. "We have deep challenges and unique opportunities, and Pam will provide solid knowledge, skills, and creativity to help us move our organization forward."

Antil is the second high-level Palo Alto official to depart from City Hall this month. Last week, Assistant Planning Director Aaron Aknin said he plans to step down from his position to serve as director of the Community Services Department in Redwood City.

Comments

Posted by PA Firefighter, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 4:36 pm

Need to tell my brothers and sisters in San Jose Fire to look out for her. She helped to destroy the Palo Alto Fire Dept.


Posted by Not so Fast, a resident of Community Center
on Apr 16, 2014 at 6:05 pm

The Fire Department destroyed itself long before she started here. Nice try!


Posted by what's the truth, a resident of Southgate
on Apr 16, 2014 at 6:17 pm

More likely, professionals don't like working under duplicitous leadership. Nor does anyone, for that matter.
I often feel sorry for some of the Planning staff because they have to follow their leader instead of using their own professional good judgement.


Posted by Koi Pi, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Apr 16, 2014 at 7:38 pm

[Post removed.]


Posted by resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 7:57 pm

@what's the truth
I feel sorry for the residents who invested in their homes, cared deeply
about this community, are bothered by ugliness, unsafe streets,and traffic
gridlock each day which are becoming defining features of Palo Alto.
This did not have to happen, it's not a tradeoff- it's the result of failed government at a shocking level.


Posted by Turischeva, a resident of Evergreen Park
on Apr 16, 2014 at 8:14 pm

The city manager that Palo Alto had in the late eighties and early nineties departed for South San Francisco, where he got an increase in pay.

City employees leaving for other regions does not surprise me.


Posted by Taxpayer, a resident of Community Center
on Apr 16, 2014 at 8:22 pm

Antil did a good job addressing some of the problems the union fire employees were causing for the taxpayers of PA. More work still to do done in PA but bigger problems exist in SJ. Nice to see a capable leader is going to be working to stop the abuses the SJ public safety employees have been pulling on the SJ taxpayers.


Posted by Congrats!!, a resident of Duveneck School
on Apr 16, 2014 at 8:35 pm

I feel as though Antil did a rather wonderful job as the ACM of Palo Alto, and i'm sure she will bring the same zest and helpfulness to the City of SJ. [Portion removed.] Keep up the great work, Pam!


Posted by resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 9:36 pm

I guess "Congrats" does not qualify as an anonymous username. Or is it
simply that praise with anonimity is acceptable but criticism with
anonimity is not. This looks like a double standard.


Posted by PA Firefighter, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 9:41 pm

[Post removed.]


Posted by resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 10:45 pm

The land use and transportation mess in Palo Alto is so bad, we are so
disenfranchised, and it has so impacted our daily lives, that it is hard to even relate to City government anymore and just hope that we continue to
have basic services.


Posted by Local, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2014 at 1:07 am

She must have gotten tired of the pace of trying to make Palo Alto into mini-San Jose and decided to just move there.

Congratulations ... to PA.


Posted by Brian Burke, a resident of another community
on Apr 17, 2014 at 6:03 am

[Post removed.]


Posted by Glad to see her go, a resident of Midtown
on Apr 17, 2014 at 7:08 am

[Post removed.]


Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2014 at 7:27 am

PA Firefighters are all multimillionaires based on their lavish early pension and health benefits, that the rest of us can only dream of while we pay our taxes. Never mind any disability scams.

If that's what "destroyed" means, I want some too.


Posted by Wayne Martin, a resident of Fairmeadow
on Apr 17, 2014 at 9:39 am

It's not clear what Pan Antil actually did while she was here in Palo Alto, as the Asst. City Manager. Her name appears on some of the CMRs, but since the City does not provide the residents, and business owners, a work plan for the senior people (Dept. Heads and above), we don't really know what her assigned objectives might have been, or how many of her objectives she achieved, once assigned.

This lack of transparency is problem that goes back to the shift from a Council/Commission form of government to a Council/City Manager form of government. The people in charge of designing the current government simply did not seem to think that the public should be involved to the extent that it was from 1910 until 1950—under the so-called Freeholder's Charter.

The fact that Ms. Antil is moving on to a bigger City government, which has far bigger problems than we have here in Palo Alto suggests that she must have done a good job here—but not having that information available first hand is a bit discouraging.

The good news, from my point-of-view is that she is rotating at/about the five year point in her tenure as a City of Palo Alto employee.


Posted by PA Firefighter, a resident of another community
on Apr 17, 2014 at 10:45 am

To Resident, I retired about 8 years ago from the fire dept. and I'm not a multimillionaire. I can say that most of the men and women I retire with are not multimillionaires too. One question I would like to ask you, if the job of Firefighter is such a "dream" as you say, then why didn't you become one?


Posted by Steve, a resident of Palo Alto Hills
on Apr 17, 2014 at 11:07 am

[Post removed.]


Posted by David Pepperdine, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2014 at 1:06 pm

So does this mean she gets to collect retirement benefits from multiple cities? If so, it's no wonder that CALPERS is going broke.


Posted by David Pepperdine, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2014 at 1:13 pm

@PA Firefighter:
If you thought the firefighter job was so poorly compensated, why did you stay in it long enough to retire (vs. becoming CEO of your own internet startup, or a heart surgeon, for example)?


Posted by JO, a resident of College Terrace
on Apr 17, 2014 at 3:38 pm

I had no interaction with Antil. I guess she did not cultivate relationships with residents. I have become aware in the past year or so that the City Manager has been fiddling with the firefighters, e.g. the way things are organized, etc. I'm not convinced that this fiddling has been good for the residents.But the City seems to have taken advantage of the defeat of the initiative pursued by the firefighters a few years back,to push a James Keene agenda with regard to firefighters. I've heard some disturbing stories.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2014 at 4:26 pm

PA Firefighters retire at age 55 with a six-figure pension, in some cases quite a bit over $100K -- not including disability benefits if they claim them. If you live to 85, that's 30 years times $100K+ which is over $3 million. Not a lot of private sector workers have $3 million in their 401K.

If you start at age 25, retire at 55, live to 85, and get a pension bigger than your average working wage from 25 to 55, then you get paid more money not to work than you ever did to work.

The rest of us work until we're 65, going to 67, and then get Social Security which is $10K or $20K. So through the magic of city utilities and taxes, you have 68 year old private retirees paying part of their $15K social security checks into the $120K pensions of 58 year old retired firefighters.

As for applying for the job? A couple years ago one firefighter job opening got posted in San Carlos. After 2 days they had 500 applicants, and stopped taking names.


Finally, if you retired 8 years ago at 55, then we've bought you 8 years of free platinum healthcare that we ourselves would never get. We get Medicare at 65.

And you wonder why we think you guys are all about the Benjamins.


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