Sunday, October 22, 2006

Why is Veronica White Getting a Pay Raise?

Why does she even have her job? I'm not saying that she should be fired because of the expensive contracts that the sanitation department recently signed. That would have been Nagin's decision, and if I were going to fire her for contract decisions, I can think of worse.

For reasons having nothing to do with Ms. White's job performance, I have to wonder why the city feels the need keep a six-figure (probably in that range*) sanitation director, at all. I certainly can't think of any reason to give a pay raise to the head of a phantom department:
White conceded that the city remains dirtier than the Nagin administration believes acceptable, a predictable problem because the storm wiped out much of her office's vehicle fleet, halved her budget and forced her to lay off all but 14 of her 89 workers.

She promised a change, but that change is to be expected when private contracts are awarded. So you have to wonder what the director of sanitation does. The city already has a mayor and CAO to negotiate such contracts and I have no doubt that it will soon have an inspector general to say that the contracts are honest, so what does Ms. White do? I'm sure that at least a couple of the 14 remaining staffers have supervisory, why not just put that small staff under the head of the department of public works? An additional 14 people wouldn't turn a department that had gone from having 340 employees to 86 employees into a bloated bureaucracy.

Personally, I don't think any pay raises outside of the police and fire departments can be justified at this point in time. I could possibly be convinced if the administration and the SEIU gave real information rather than anecdotal sob stories, but I'll finish up on that in another post. However, if the city is going to grant across-the-board raises, there's a better way to pay for them than using federal loans. You might recall Nagin's plan to raise pay during his first term:
Nagin's vision, articulated in his campaign and during his first 60 days in office, has been to raise the pay of top appointees first, financing the increases by shrinking the overall size of the City Hall work force. The "all-star team" he creates will eventually improve the city's financial position, Nagin has said, making across-the-board raises possible.

We all saw what an "all-star" team he created. But, at the end of his first term, the city shrunk its overall work force to a much greater degree than it eliminated supervisory positions. Now it's time to get rid of some dead weight at the top to improve the city's financial position, making across-the-board raises possible.

As the Picayune said Sunday:
New Orleans has tremendous needs -- from curbing crime to patching city streets to handling the myriad permits and paperwork for rebuilding. And the city's recovery will depend on how well its scant resources are used to meet those needs.

Sounds like what I've been saying for months.

*Her salary is listed at $47,500, but as the Picayune notes, the listed salaries for the city's department heads tend to be less than half of the actual salaries. Well, that's the case where the actual salaries are known. Am I the only person who's appalled that the city council voted on the pay raises without asking some obvious questions?

I think she needs the raise to support her plastic surgery addiction. Her face is tighter than...uh, use your imagination.
Sanitation Director, hummmm....sounds like someone neeeded to hang a title on a empty job. KCD, qualifications?? come on you can't be serious, huh? Until the beautiful city of New Orleans gains control over many non-specific jobs, paying outrageous salaries, and controls violent crime, this wonderful city will have a difficult time returning to better times.
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Old Favorites
  • Political Boxing (untitled)
  • Did Bush Take His Ball and Go Home
  • Teratogens and Plan B
  • Foghorn Leghorn Republicans
  • Quote of the Day
  • October's News(Dec.1)
  • untitled, Nov.19 (offshore revenue)
  • Remember Upton Sinclair
  • Oct. Liar of thr month
  • Jindal's True Colors
  • No bid contracts