Anyone who dealt with Tom Williams during his tenure as city manager of Milpitas could’ve warned Millbrae when it hired him on for the equivalent position last year.
But the Peninsula ‘burb had to learn the hard way—in a told-you-so moment brought to you by everyone who’s ever sued him for harassment—that the bureaucrat hired to lead the city has a terrible temper and a penchant for bending the rules to get his way.
On Monday, lifelong Millbrae resident Marcia Perez emailed Mayor Wayne Lee about an upsetting phone call earlier that day from Williams, who allegedly threatened to “come down hard” on them for blight and hurled a barrage of insults and false accusations for 30 seconds before she could get a word in edgewise.
“His abrasive and coarse approach had me very concerned,” she told Lee. “We just do not act this way in Millbrae.”
Though Perez introduced herself by name at least three times, she says Williams insisted on calling her Ms. Sanchez, repeatedly interrupted her and questioned whether she’s even from Millbrae. She is—not that it matters. “Regardless of where any of your business owners live, we should be treated with respect,” she wrote.
Perez says she asked Williams why he didn’t just email her “like a city normally does.” Based on his track record in Milpitas, she concluded that it’s because he’s “learned not to create a paper trail.”
“It should be noted he has a dark history of unethical dealings with property developers,” Perez stated. “My mother is almost 90 years old—does he smell vulnerability???”
The call was more than just personally insulting, Perez said: it made her worry about retribution, since he oversees the city’s planning and permitting division. “I fear,” she said, “that the city of Milpitas’ nightmare is now ours.”