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Orange County supervisors appoint interim CEO

August 27, 2012 |  7:18 pm

Orange County supervisors Monday appointed Bob Franz as interim chief executive officer while a national search continues for the person to fill the county’s top position.

The supervisors made the decision during a closed-door meeting.

Franz has been serving as the acting CEO after Tom Mauk resigned in July in the wake of the Carlos Bustamante scandal. Mauk’s departure was one of several after Bustamante, a Santa Ana city councilman, was charged with 12 felonies and four misdemeanors in connection with the alleged battery and sexual assault of seven women over eight years during his time as a county executive.

The charges raised serious questions about how the county handles internal investigations; the Bustamante case highlighted several missteps, such as allegations being examined by one of Bustamante’s subordinates.

Franz, who was the county’s chief financial officer, has been serving as the acting CEO since Aug. 2.

Supervisor John Moorlach said he doesn’t know how long it will take to find a permanent CEO.

“We have some outstanding department heads, any one of which could easily step into the role,” he said. “We could have our next CEO right under our nose.”

He added that potential candidates could also come from outside the county. “It’s obviously very public that we have a vacancy,” he said.

Supervisors interviewed about five candidates from inside and outside the county for the interim CEO position, Moorlach said.

Franz joined the county in January 2007 as CFO. He has been in public service for 40 years, and has held positions with Glendale, Huntington Beach and Montebello, said county spokesman Howard Sutter.

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-- Nicole Santa Cruz in Orange County

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