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David Zenger (third from left, next to Tony Bushala, Fullerton millionaire gadfly-turned-recluse).

David Zenger has lately become a fixture at Anaheim City Council meetings, where he thunders during public comments against what he considers the council majority’s poor stewardship on behalf of the taxpayers.

The Voice of OC yesterday reported on what has been common knowledge among county insiders for several weeks: Zenger is suing the County of Orange because Supervisor Shawn Nelson fired him from his staff this spring, and is seeking either $1,014,000 of the taxpayers’ money, or a $135,000 a year job of his choice in the county bureaucracy plus $100,000:

Dave Zenger, until recently a senior aide to Board of Supervisors Chairman Shawn Nelson, has filed a legal claim against the county alleging that Nelson abruptly fired him after other county supervisors complained about Zenger conducting, at Nelson’s direction, numerous investigations into alleged improper use of public funds.

“Mr. Zenger was demonstrably terminated in retaliation for Mr. Zenger’s conscientious inquiries and investigations into questionable or possibly illegal schemes, projects and activities by county personnel,” reads a June 6 letter sent by Zenger’s attorney, Steven Dial – who also represents county Human Resources manager Kathleen Tahilramani in another whistleblower lawsuit against the county, which is scheduled for trial on Nov. 18.

“These projects were initiated and directed by Supervisor Nelson as well as Supervisors [Janet] Nguyen and [Pat] Bates, and often featured the involvement of lobbyist Ruby Wood. These same individuals, as a result of Mr. Zenger’s conscientious inquiries into possible wrongdoing, conspired among themselves and pressured Supervisor Nelson in particular to terminate Mr. Zenger in retaliation for his protected activity,” reads the June 6 claim letter.

Cue laughter.

It’s worth noting here that staff to county supervisors serve at the pleasure of their bosses, and can be fired at any time the boss decides he or she no longer wants or needs their services.

Also from the article:

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