Emilia Reyes, the executive director of First 5 Fresno County, is to be relieved of her duties tomorrow, sources tell CVObserver.
A special meeting agenda for the First 5 Fresno County board lists a pending “public employee discipline/dismissal/release” to be handled by Supervisor Brian Pacheco, chairman of the county agency, and counsel.
The county agency, responsible for social services for children ages 5-years-old and younger, has been fraught with controversy over the course of four years, largely stemming from construction of its multi-million-dollar Lighthouse property along Tulare Street in downtown Fresno.
However, Reyes’ pending dismissal arises from another, so-far unstated controversy. Sources told CVObserver that the move to remove Reyes arises from financial improprieties following an internal review of the agency’s financials by the County of Fresno.
Reyes was named to the top job at the children’s agency in 2014 following the ouster of Kendra Rogers after a falling out with both Supervisors Henry R. Perea and Debbie Poochigian. She served as interim director following Rogers’ exit before being named the permanent replacement at the head of the agency.
Sources told CVObserver that some of the financial improprieties at the root of Reyes’ dismissal may have been made at the direction of Perea in his final year as chair of the agency, coinciding with his exit from the County Board of Supervisors in early 2017.
CVObserver will update this story as more information becomes available.