What do rock n' roll and city budgets have in common? Sacramento City Treasurer Russ Fehr. Both have been integral parts of his life for the past 29 years.
When time allows, Fehr can be found taking his daily walk around City Hall. He's usually wearing a white button-down shirt with the sleeves rolled up. Below his Ray Ban-style sunglasses sits a moustache that would put the Lorax to shame. If you follow closely enough, you'll likely hear a baritone hum of some classic rock tune. He's partial to Tom Petty.
He says now is a good time to retire.
"I'm just gonna lay low and go back to reading ancient history and archaeology and puttering around and doing nothing for awhile."
Fehr has overseen the city's finances -first as Finance Director and then as City Treasurer- through the Great Recession of the late 2000's, through the arena process, and now through a series of refinanced projects that will leave the city's in better financial shape than when he started.
For a man known for his love of music, he will likely take breaks from retirement with an appearance or two at some local haunt with a guitar in his hands, "Of course! Of course!" he says.
It's a passion that began long ago.
"I just love the Music Circus," he says. "I have since my mom took me when I was a boy 50-plus years ago and I got a kick out of it then and still do."
The man has a tie-dye soul in sunglasses and looks forward to relaxing from a career in numbers, though he can't help but provide a brief cost-benefit analysis to his retirement.
"Think of the dry cleaning bill," he says with a laugh.
Fehr spent 19 years with Sacramento County before moving to the city side in 2006.
His last day will be February 2nd.