Tuesday, May 11, 2010
A CITY OUT OF CONTROL , ANOTHER UPDATE
"Anonymous" posted this comment earlier under another posting on the blog:
Guys, let's not argue with each other over minutia. As I had suggested to Kevin in an earlier post, I recommend to all interested parties that you request an org chart for each city dept and the Bd of Ed. Org chart should include name of position/title, name of employee occupying title, salary, and a brief description of the each dept and each div within the dept. Unless I am off, I believe you will see much duplication and overlap within depts and between depts. In most municipalities, Human Relations is a division of Human Resources, not a separate dept with its own hightly paid administration. Check out the assessor's files. It would appear that Eddie's campaign headquarters were housed in property owned by his Director of Human Relations, Lillian Ruiz, who actually resides in Bloomfield. Doesn't the city charter specify that dept heads live in the city??? Maybe she used her investment property as her residential address; not sure why Santiago Malave's cracker jack staff didn't notice. Okay, here's some more duplication/overlap: Why does the city have a Dept. of Health & Human Services, an Office of Young Children AND an Office for Youth Services as three separate stand alone depts??? Yeah, a rhetorical question, but here's the answer, Eddie wanted to give more of his peeps high paid administrative/director jobs. In other cities, there would NOT be three separate depts. Wait, there's more. The city has a Grants Administrator in both the Management & Budget Dept and in the Development Services Dept. Wait, there's more. The Development Services Dept has numerous divisions all headed by either directors and/or Administrative Operations Managers; in other cities the functions of planning, economic development, housing, and community development are in one division, not four as in Hartford. Are you seeing a pattern here??? Yeah, three of Eddie's boyzzz head up three of the Dev Services divisions. You wanna see some creative writing, FOIA their respective job applications and compare them to the actual job postings. I believe the investigator and state's atty in Eddie's corruption case also examined this patterned issue. Santiago's crew is very lenient in its interpretation (pun definitely intended) of the boilerplate language found on most if not all city job postings ("Wherever possible, appropriate equivalents will be considered.") I'd like to see their definition of "appropriate". I bet Cotto knows.
In theory this is a good idea, but the letter below from Hartford's Corporation Counsel John Rose shows what happens when someone has the "audacity" to request public documents.
Steve Goode at courant.com/cityline, originally posted about this. You can read Steve's posting here. Apparently the Yankee Institute has set up a website that lists all state employees and their respective salaries and state pensions at sunlight.org.
It seems as though they were trying to expand the site to also cover municipalities. They made the mistake of requesting public documents from a public agency in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act and were chastised by Rosie.
Hopefully the information you requested can be gathered and is probably available from the Council as a response to a budget question about salaries. I'll try to post it here when available. The other issue is that FOI is only for documents that exist, it doesn't require an agency to produce a "new" document or do research other than to find and provide a document that is requested. If an organizational chart doesn't exist, the city doesn't have to make one. The information would have to be culled from other documents obtained or requested.
Below is Rose's response to the Yankee Institutes FOIA request. As a side note, Rosie makes it a point to point out a misspelling in the original letter. How many mistakes can you find in Rosie's letter, start with the date, since when does March have 285 days?
John Rose Yankee Institute Letter