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La Palma City Manager Announces Retirement

Laurie Murray

LA PALMA, Calif. – After 23 years of public service, 13 of which with La Palma, City Manager Laurie A. Murray has announced her retirement effective December 19, 2019.

Prior to being appointed City Manager in November 2015, Mrs. Murray was hired as the City’s first Administrative Services Manager in 2006, and was subsequently promoted to the Administrative Services Director position in 2014. Among her many accomplishments as City Manager, Mrs. Murray is the proudest of the passage of Measure JJ and the restructuring of the City’s unfunded pension obligations, both of which contributed towards La Palma’s long term financial stability; restoring positive labor relations to make La Palma a place that employees want to work; and providing a higher level of transparency and communication to the public.
Mrs. Murray said that, “When I came to La Palma in 2006, I knew that I had found my professional home,” and added, “La Palma is a wonderful organization, as evidenced by the engaged and supportive community, the talented and hard-working staff, and the dedication and commitment of the City Council.” “I greatly appreciate the opportunity and privileges I have had to serve the residents and businesses of La Palma these past thirteen plus years and will always look back on these years fondly,” Murray added.

Mayor Marshall Goodman said, “Laurie has made a lasting and meaningful impression in our city,” and added, “We will miss the dedication, commitment, and leadership she has shown over the past thirteen years.” “I know I speak for the entire City Council in thanking Laurie for her exemplary public service and in wishing her the best as she moves to the next chapter of her life,” Mayor Goodman added.

Prior to La Palma, Mrs. Murray had previously worked for the cities of Aliso Viejo and Mission Viejo. Mrs. Murray earned her Bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Vanguard University of Southern California in May 2007, graduating Summa Cum Laude.
About the City of La Palma
Ranked by Money Magazine in 2015, 2013, 2011, and 2007 as one of America’s Best Places to Live, the City of La Palma is a 1.9 square mile general law city in northwest Orange County, consisting of over 15,568 residents and approximately 300 commercial and industrial businesses. The City was incorporated in 1955 under the name of Dairyland and has 53 full-time and 35 part-time employees.

  • La Palma Mgmt says:

    Since she was the former city of La Palma city clerk, least she knew some of the past history of the city. Give her credit for that. Also working with many city managers in my lifespan, I think the city would have been better off employing CM who lived closer to La Palma, since Laurie lived in South Orange County and CM who had a lot of City management experience under their belt. This was the first city management job she had . She was a very happy pleasant person to work with, but many LP residents complained she never returned phone calls, etc. She did not understand: Government of the people, by the people or for the people. LP residents said she had a one man show and lost a lot of Mgmt and staffers. City is still divided, shameful, only 2 ml sq city.

    On the negative side, she passed measure JJ, which didn’t help attract LA/OC transplants who were using Proposition 13 to come buy into the city. The high sales tax rate in the city, either created a lot of hostility for the seniors, they shopped elsewhere, or to take advantage of Proposition 13 , we’re not able to relocate him to the city of La Palma because of the horrible sales taxes.

    Laurie did nothing for the water district, many staffers left the city, and still islands in the city of Cerritos or being robbed by the excessive water rates in La Palma, since the city of La Palma Services sections of Cerritos.

    Laurie was not able to be a freeway between the neighborhood watch between Cerritos and La Palma, she failed the residence on the west side of town. Crime escalated over on N Denni Street and she was not able to corral this. Many LP residents before her reign, over the restrictive RV Parking Laws and she was not able to mend this

    Laurie had great expectations for El Rancho Verde’s Park, but bottom line El Rancho Verde’s park, La Palma looks the worst it ever has. LP TC, still is a high vacancy rate which is ridiculous. McDonalds Square, has been vacant for many yrs. Hope the new CM is more aggressive to secure new businesses to come to La Palma, Ca. Will agree, La Palma residential hoods are being maintained better then Cerritos, but not as well compared to Rossmoor, which is unincorporated city and no direct CM.

    La Palma has had way to many CM since the late 60’s,


  • Herbert Suel says:

    Dear La Palma City Council,

    Please make sure there is a fair and impartial search for our next City Manager so that we get the best talent available instead of taking the easy way out and promoting from within without doing any due diligence whatsoever. Cronyism is unhealthy for our city.

    Everyone knew that Ms. Murray, while affable, was certainly not the best available candidate to be our City Manager but she was “owed” something for doing the bidding of an overbearing council member and flagrant support of Measure JJ. She was rewarded with a promotion, protection from being fired for 6 months after any election and a 20% increase in her salary since she was given the job in late 2015. Now she will enjoy the rich pension benefits she lobbied so hard to secure with the Measure JJ tax increase instead of sticking around to “pay off the unfunded pension liability in nine years” like she promised. Which, by the way, stands at $17.6 million today compared to $15.5 million when she got the job despite $5 million in prepayments which she lobbied hard to get approved. The promise is broken and she will not be here to be held accountable for breaking it.

    Now, maybe this City Council will get us a city manager like we had with Paul Bussey who was a real visionary and leader instead of another in what has been a series of dull, unimaginative but obedient sychophants. One can dream.

  • Hamburger Icon says:

    Dear Laurie:

    Most of the residents are worn out, over the many times the streets are being resurfaced, but yet the center Landscaping has been dead for almost a decade. Look better if the dead grass was just turned up and expose bare dirt.

    When was the OCR news updated about LP, former CM least updated local newspaper about current events weekly. Now we have nothing……..

    How many times has the city of Cerritos, offered reclaimed water, trucked in, and nothing has materialized? LP could have purchased recycled water, same as Forest Lawn, but LP looked the other way.

    Most of the city employees + water department + LP Police Department have jumped ship and take an early retirement. Current police chief is a nothing, only race card holder.

    How many backdoor conversations has there been between La Palma being annexed with Buena Park- Cypress – Los Alamitos? Now Los Alamitos is talking about levying a $1K parcel tax per house, wondering if this will be played out here eventually in LP.

    Senior Center at Montecito, is mismanaged. Remember, developed by City funds and lacks supervision.

    Why hasn’t the Del Amo Bridge been widened ? . This is the gateway to Orange County, Board of Supervisors nor the city of La Palma have done nothing to construct a safer Bridge which is earthquake-proof.

    Vacated RR easement is still plagued with homeless living in the abandoned Railroad Eastman.

    LP shopping center on the North West corner of La Palma/ Moody is a real eyesore to the community. Vacant building has been this way for decades. No one wants medical facility there for impaired patients, well-well; will not bring sales tax to the city.

    Cliffs hide-a-way, still on going thorn to the community. 99% of the LP PD calls are from this center……

    Former Kings Imperial Restaurant was the only restaurant which really serviced the city, everything after this, was nothing of importance.

    New Macs square is still partially vacant and corner is really eyesore.

    LP Towne Center, well residents are still waiting for whatever –whatever- whatever ???? Valley View is still under developed.

    Dog park proposal has been talked and talked about, still nothing.

    Summary, past decade was all about sales tax increases and the city is left with many broken promises and the LPCC has done nothing to turn this around. Transparency, what a laugh, still city does not broadcast CC meetings. Talk about lies, CC wears many hats, including Planning Comm.
    Many of the homeowners feel city hall and Mgmt, has dampened the city, by installing Googles famous hamburger cloud bar over all of the city. City has been clouded out again, by this council and city manager.

    Cannabis proposal has been only real dialog this CC has produced!!! 91 users are still waiting for the digital boards, to broadcast something of substance, so far, only advertising has polluted the sky space, hence, not one car has exited the freeway, to bring in much needed sales tax revenue after reading the junk being advertised digitally.

    Well, same old news from DAIRYLAND…………