Fresno Bee Newsroom Blog

Fresno County supervisors spar over how to deal with city

Not only are the city of Fresno and the county struggling to get along, but county leaders are now at odds over how to deal with the city.

Incoming Fresno County Supervisor Andreas Borgeas, the former city councilman, proposed this week the creation of a joint city-county task force to try to settle common issues that the two sides don’t agree on – building a new animal shelter or high-speed rail or regional growth. Pick a topic.

Sound simple? It wasn’t.

The plan garnered just one supporter at Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting –- Judy Case — and perhaps more tellingly, the plan gave the new supervisor a preview of the pushback he’s apt to get from his veteran colleagues over the next four years.

Supervisors Phil Larson and Debbie Poochigian said they’d seen task-force ideas like this tried before without success: “We’ve kind of been there and done that,” said Poochigian.

And Supervisor Henry Perea had a plan of his own, which Larson was quick to support: demand the city drop its lawsuit against the county (over development) before any discussion begins. “We’ll start the conversation there,” Perea said.

Continue reading →

Supervisor Borgeas extends olive branch to campaign rival

Last year at this time, local businessman Larry Fortune was running for Fresno County supervisor and churning out campaign literature calling his opponent Andreas Borgeas — you may want to close your ears — a “liberal.”

Borgeas, a conservative, shot back, labeling Fortune a desperate career politician. The race got ugly. Feelings got hurt.

But this month Borgeas, in one of his first moves as the new supervisor, is seeking to mend fences with his old rival by appointing him to a key county commission.

“I think it’s important that we put the campaign behind us, as fierce and as competitive as it was,” Borgeas said.

The supervisor said he asked Fortune to apply for a seat on the Civil Service Commission, a panel that helps resolve employee-employer disputes.

Fortune obliged, and Borgeas said he’ll seek approval for Fortune at the next Board of Supervisors meeting.