A Message to Port Orange City Council
In a 15 minute special council meeting this afternoon, and with another item on the agenda you are being asked to establish an new “Accounting Manager’ position. I would urge caution in considering this request as
- The need for this position has not been demonstrated.
- The requisite qualifications and job duties for this position have been established. .
- The massive reorganization this position presupposes have not been considered by anyone beyond the Manager and CFO.
- The need, qualifications, duties, and reorganization has not been referred to the ABAB for its recommendations as was promised.
This proposal is being made by a Manager with one foot out the door and a CFO who has been consistently untruthful regarding the ability and performance of his department. That performance has been demonstrated to be horribly incompetent for the past decade each and every time an audit or review window has been opened on that department.
The turmoil that has ensnarled other departments as dedicated hard working employees have served notice they will no longer serve under ICMA retreads and others who owe their longevity to a decades old un-stated policy of back room cronyism and manipulation can reasonably be expected to spread to Finance. When that happens and when the good people in Finance start spilling the beans as what is really going on in that department it is more than reasonable to expect that the current CFO will be its first causality.
It is for that reason I would encourage you to have the Assistant Manager in conjunction with the ABAB begin establishing the qualifications and abilities desired in a new CFO.
The band aid solution Manager Kisela is offering in the form of a new ’Accounting Manager’ position is designed to mask personality issues with the Comptroller and incompetence issues with the CFO. Manager Kisela is never going to offer a real solution to the problem in finance. To do so would undermine the whole ICMA paradigm of placing incompetents in responsible positions and then insisting everything is OK and if that assertion is challenged insist that everything is getting better. We all know everything in Finance is not OK and it is not getting better.
The root problem in Finance is the inability of the Comptroller and CFO to perform competently throughout the accounting cycle which may be thought of as Budgeting, Bookkeeping, and Financial Reporting with generous attention to adequate internal controls throughout.
That inability stems from both personality and competence shortcomings. ( Ironically the personality issue which is easily confirmed in conversation with former finance employees who were lucky enough to escape to other City departments is acknowledged without ever being stated in the revised organizational chart where all personnel save one unlucky accountant are no longer reporting to the Comptroller.)
Finance is currently operating as a circle of confusion and redundancy.
This was demonstrated at the Jan 2014 ABAB meeting where it was explained by staff – that payroll which is a weekly production in Port Orange is touched by the Manager or Asst Mgr, and by every single Department head or Asst Dept head in the City before it is further processed to varying degrees by Jamie, Bridgett, Lori, Rose and Stella.
Creating a new position without proper consideration and without addressing the root problem will do little more than expand that circle.
Port Orange taxpayers pay their CFO and Comptroller $ 142,832 and $98,522 respectively. For what I consider to be overly generous compensation they deserve at a minimum fully credentialed individuals with demonstrated ability who are willing and wanting to make Port Orange their home. Their real home, Not commute from Palm Coast as does the Comptroller, and certainly not just rent some apartment Monday thru Thursday as does the CFO.
To burden taxpayers with yet another new position under these circumstances
- Without more properly defining the desired qualifications and abilities for the CFO.
- And without looking past the current problems that have been exacerbated by the CFO’s inability to retain or recruit staff capable of filling existing positions
- AND without proper consideration as to whether the size of Port Orange finance warrants the additional costs associated with a two track accounting function at the Comptroller level, is not any example of responsible Council action that I would care to endorse.
10 thoughts on “A Message to Port Orange City Council”
By all means, this new “accounting manager” position needs to be voted down or tabled for future discussion. The timing is terrible. I for one assume that Wayne Saunders will not remain much longer ( or at least am hopeful he isn’t) .
I am also hopeful that the Riverwalk proposal is voted down or also tabled. It’s been some 15 years in the works now and with all the turmoil, today is NOT a day to make this type of decision. Green and Kisela are trying to ramrod Mr LaCour and condos down the citizens throats. There is some hope to defeat it with a 3-2 vote.
It will be interesting to see Mayor Green Jeans demeanor and attitude at this meeting.
So, we have department heads who do not reside in the city ? Is this not a requirement for department heads ?
If Col. Saunders is circumventing this, the buttons should be pushed hard on this issue.
I would hope that council would deffer the decision on this till after a new council member(s) are sworn in, or we have hired a new city manager.
That would also give time to carefully consider the attributes and qualifications for the position, and conclude the pay rate job class study.
Their is enough upheaval in our organization adding another position and changing the structure is not likely to be productive.
You people are so sad in your pathetic lives. You hate everything and every corner is a conspiracy all targeting the hapless uneducated citizen. You rail against the financial mismanagement, yet you scream coverup when the city considers a new position to create a check and balance.
You scream favortism when a developer might get half of some future tax base increase. Yet some of you live in developments which were created with the simular tax advantaged projects.
You cant even argue the merits of a project. Instead you imply insinuate and accuse that the numbers are phony. You impune and directly attack individuals and accuse them of manipulating facts. I doubt you can even understand a pro forma.
We know butt hole Bob is Pohlman. We would prefer butt kisser next time Bob.
So Bob you support welfare obviously? Because this is welfare…big time welfare….. First time TIF has been shared with a developer in this city……taxpayer dollars going to a wealthy developer……I do not support welfare..except for the truly needy…Buddy does not fit that criterion for me….I do not want to subsidize a developer..have you read up on TIF and its misuse in other areas of the country???…might want to check it out…not a road we want to go down..
….am guessing you are benefiting in some way from an association with Buddy or the chamber or you are in a related industry……how about some full disclosure from Bob on who writes his paycheck??
So.. look Bob…..give Buddy your tax dollar..do not give him mine..
…your strategy of attack on us is time honored…demonize your opponent…we are “malcontents”, “pathetic”, “naysayers”, “conspiracy driven”…this kind of oppo attack is well known..
..ain’t gonna fly..this city has some real issues..we just had a mass of resignations….for many good reasons..and more are coming…and more scandals…..not driven by us…..driven by internal conditions in this city…lies, deceit and coverups….did you read Dick Kelton’s report??? …lame and weak as it was, it did acknowledge there were problems…..and that was written by Kisela’s hand picked guy…..doesn’t that concern you a little…? Nah…just trust the mayor and give Buddy the money….all will be well…
Bob, thank you for those most profound thoughts on the problems in city Government. Can I assume you mean there are no problems to address. Any way, it is foolish of me to even reply to you. Perhaps you are really a pro activist making a poor argument to make the activists look even better than they are, in the scheme of reform in city government.
butthole bob you sound like you might be a contractor, a realtor, or a real estate developer. Who Knows maybe your a contractor and a politician. One thing for certain if you are not a crook, than you are certainly an idiot. Without a doubt if you believe the shit you are spouting you are certainly not on the inside, because if you were you would see things that might change your perspective. Anything that is on the up and up, and anyone who knows what there talking about can break things down into sound bites so that most anyone can wrap their heads around it. I say lets do what Scott Stiltner said and put this to a citizens referendum vote. Leading up to that there can be a workshop where someone that knows what they are talking about can communicate the pros and cons and the bottom line intelligently. Let the people decide. Power to the people!
We didn’t call you Butthole Bob…you called yourself that.
Last night at the Riverwalk CRA meeting The developer put on a good show starting with the dog story Which was a real tear jerker. Then they paraded a load of real estate people through that sounded like used car salesmen. Then they ask us to rely on not (phony numbers) but sales and tax projections. These kind of projections in our current economy and projected future economy have to be viewed with some skepticism. I would like to see an independent objective presentation on the legal and financial repercussions given to council and our citizens so we can get both sides of the story.
I do want Riverwalk to come to fruition. I don’t like high-rise condos but that’s a done deal. I guess I’ll just have to get over it. After the meeting I did come away with a little bit better feeling about it and learned a few things. I want the tax payers to get a fair deal. If we are getting into the TIF to developer business how are we going to be fair to other developers? Are we opening ourselves up for legal problems when other developers show up with their hands out? Do we really want to start down this road?
Here is one way to look at the debt/equity pro forma component. We will be in debt to the developer and will be paying that debt out of our equity which at this point is essentially the projected tax revenue generated by this development. And yes there is a debt/equity component used in pro forma. You can spin this any way you want. We heard talk about a halo effect and that this will be the beginning of major redevelopment of the Ridgewood corridor. I guess that would be nice but the way things are now I’m not quite buying it yet, but I am hopeful. Just look north in S. Daytona and Holly Hill Big condos no other changes around them. If this does increases property values in the area it means some of us will be paying higher property taxes. At least we might get a nice park and I like that. It is understandable that people don’t want to jump off the high dive into the shallow end of the pool on this project and that’s their right.
I may have a sad pathetic life. I don’t hate anyone or any thing. I don’t like the word hate or anything that it symbolizes. I don’t believe that there is a conspiracy around every corner Although if you have been paying attention there have been a few shady things going on as of late inside the city. I’m not taking a radical hateful stance on this project. I want it to succeed with an outcome that we can all be happy with. I am a skeptic by nature but I try to stay positive. I have mixed feelings about it. I’m trying to keep an open mind and rationalize all of this by looking at it from different points of view.