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Chief Delgado nixes $3,500 reception Lathrop council wanted to stage
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LATHROP – Former Lathrop Police Chief Dolores Delgado will be presented a recognition plaque at the City Council’s regularly scheduled meeting on Feb. 1 at City Hall.

However, the Manteca Bulletin has learned that the catered dinner in her honor that was unanimously approved by the council earlier this month, and the “basic reception” that was to be held the evening of her award presentation have been cancelled at her request, according to sources at City Hall.

The council voted to allocate $3,500 for the catered dinner for up to 200 people at the Lathrop Community Center, with the money coming from the city manager’s contingency funds. With the cancellation of the planned event, that amount will go back to the city manager’s account. According to the provisions of the resolution approved by the council members, any remaining funds from the dinner would have been returned to the funding source.

While the money was allocated for the dinner, no date was set at the time of the council’s vote.

And while the council members’ approval was unanimous, it was strongly criticized by Lathrop resident J. Chaka Santos. Speaking after the council vote – the item was approved without further discussion as part of the consent calendar – Santos suggested that instead of spending the money for the catered dinner, the city should “spend the money for all the people,” perhaps at an event to introduce the community to members of the police and fire departments, for example.

“If you’re going to do it, do it for the community,” said Santos who recently announced he is running for the mayor’s post in this year’s November elections.

Mayor Kristy Sayles explained that the purpose of the dinner was for the city to express its appreciation to the outgoing police chief for her years of service and countless contributions to the well-being of the people in the community.

Delgado was only the second female to hold the office of police chief in Lathrop, after former chief Barbara Moffit who has since retired from the Sheriff’s Department. During her five-year tenure as Lathrop’s top cop – out of her eight years’ assignment in Lathrop – Delgado helped put San Joaquin County’s youngest incorporated city on the map by being recognized by the state Hispanic Chambers of Commerce in 2008 as California’s highest-ranking Latina in law enforcement who is not a political appointee. That same year, she was awarded the Mayor’s Award of Distinction from the city.

Delgado is a 24-year veteran of the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office which is contracted by Lathrop to provide police services. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of the Pacific in Stockton and a master’s degree from the University of San Francisco.