A judge has declared San Francisco Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White a deadbeat divorcee and ordered the city to start garnisheeing $3,300 a month from her paycheck for spousal support to her ex-husband.San Francisco is famous for flakes of various sorts, and there are always crazy stories about its politicians. Dan White is famous for his Twinkie defense for killing the mayor, which ended up making Diane Feinstein's career. The craziness goes on:
Hayes-White says she stopped paying support about 14 months ago, after an incident in which her ex-hubby, Robert "Sean" White, grabbed and choked one of their sons while in a booze-fueled rage.
In December, he pleaded no contest in San Mateo County Superior Court to a misdemeanor charge of child endangerment and cruelty. He is serving his sentence on a county sheriff's work detail and living in a rehab house.
Last week, White went to San Francisco Superior Court demanding that the chief resume the spousal support she was ordered to pay when the couple divorced in 2009.
On Friday, Judge Ron Albers signed an order to start deducting the payments from her $302,000 annual salary, though it does not appear to cover the more than $40,000 in backlogged payments.
The support scuffle is the latest twist in the couple's family drama.I usually sympathize with parents facing family court orders, but I am having a hard time in this case. She makes $302k + benefits from the city, but she complains about paying her bills. She got her husband arrested and convicted of a crime, but she complains that he is not earning money while he serves her sentence. And she complains about child care duties after cutting off her husband from joint custody.
In 2005, White - a first cousin of the late Dan White - called 911 and accused his wife of hitting him on the head twice with a pint glass in their kitchen in San Francisco. Hayes-White denied the accusations, and he recanted.
(No charges were ever filed - something supporters of suspended Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi have pointed to in arguing that prosecutors overreached in charging him for what they see as a similar set of circumstances.)
After a long separation, the couple divorced in 2009, but shared custody of their three children until last year, when Hayes-White obtained a restraining order prohibiting him from contacting her or the two children who were still minors.
In an interview, Hayes-White said she had stopped making the spousal payments because of the growing costs she has incurred raising their children.
"This is not about being vindictive," she said. "Everything just went on pause" after last year's attack on the couple's son.
San Francisco should have found a man to be fire chief. I am sure that she was an affirmative action appointment, and probably does not know how to put out a fire.
So which part of this is untrue? Based on this, I'd say you were nuts.
Hayes-White, a San Francisco native, came to the department after graduating from the University of Santa Clara with a degree in business. She was hired as a firefighter in April 1990, promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in 1993 and to the rank of Captain in January 1996. In May 1996 she was made acting Battalion Chief with oversight of the department's dispatch and communications systems. She oversaw the installation of the computer-aided system (CAD) and automated information systems and by doing so, streamlined and improved the department's dispatch and records management capabilities.
Also accomplished during her tenure as the Battalion Chief for Dispatch and Communications, Hayes-White spearheaded the unification of City dispatch operations into the single Emergency Communications Department, a process that combined Fire, EMS, and police dispatch communications under one roof, improving response times and service to the community, as well as strengthening interagency cooperation and collaboration.
Promoted to Assistant Deputy Chief in 1998, she was responsible for the Division of Support Services, the Bureau of Communications, the Bureau of Equipment, the Bureau of Engineering and Water Supply, Management Information Systems, and all facility repairs, maintenance and renovations.
Prior to her appointment as Chief, Hayes-White served as the Director of Training for the Fire Department, where she supervised recruit training, in-service training, continuing education, and firefighter-paramedic cross training. She developed the Battalion-Based In-Service Training Program, a process that virtually tripled the number of formal training hours for all members of the department, with no fiscal or financial impact on the City.
Chief Hayes-White is very proud of the fact that she has, either as a Firefighter or Officer, worked at every one of San Francisco's forty-two fire stations.
So she has a history of affirmative-action promotions. Has she ever fought a fire? Has she ever accomplished anything? What has she done to earn that $302k + benefits? She cannot even run her own household, much less a city fire dept.
Of course she fought fires and served in all 43 of the stations.
BTW, she stopped support (although it was wrong) because he tried to choke one of his sons while in a drunken rage. It was her protest and she caught up in payments. If you do not know, he is no longer allowed near his choldren because of his violence.
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