ALPINE--The city of Alpine's mayor and city manager are receiving harsh criticism after a current city council member went public about alleged power abuse and mis-management of city funds.
Friday afternoon, councilman Carlos Lujuan held a special public community meeting to reveal his claims against the mayor Dr. Avinash Rangra and city councilman Chuy Garcia.
One of the community members in attendance at the meeting was Carolyn Johnson. She said, the city definitely has a problem.
"The public's money is being stolen."
Addressing the audience, Lujuan referenced the current city manager and said,"He's got away with many things for many years and it needs to be stopped."
Lujuan has announced his decision to step down from city council in May, but until that time comes he's making sure his voice is heard.
The turnout of about 50 people was considerable large. Most of the people were backing Lujuan, except one outspoken woman.
"Coming in May you're not gonna be in city council anyway. So here you are making a big stink for Alpine, all this stuff and you're not gonna be in that office anymore," said Latricia Slater.
Lujuan said the list of complaints and wrong doings in the city council are great. However, he said most of the complaints are against the city manager and mayor.
Mayor Rangra spoke to Big 2's Katiera Winfrey and said the claims he's been abusing his power is false and the claims of mismanagement of funds are un-founded.
Big 2's Katiera Winfrey asked, "Do you feel like you're doing everything necessary as mayor? Rangra responded, "Yes...yes." Another question asked of Rangra, "Do you feel like you're following the legal protocol? Rangra's answer, "I'm following the legal protocol."
"Does he have proof of that? that the mayor is abusing his power," said Rangra.
Meantime Johnson isn't confident in the mayors words.
"Money has just been designated for all sorts of stuff and it never gets done."
Rangra said that an audit has been issued, however the findings of the audit won't be availbe for the public until the next closed door council meeting scheduled for next week.