Thursday, May 13, 2010

A New Director for ACHD

As you might know, ACHD will be getting a new director next year. Jay Schweitzer, the longest serving director ACHD has ever had (I think), is retiring in February 2011. Jay announced his retirement months ago to give the organization plenty of time to find a suitable replacement.

The Commission will be discussing the process in the coming week/s. It will be a national search so the word from personnel is that the process will be long and convoluted. Plus, with the economy the way it is, there is anticipation that there will be gazillions of applications.


However, I have some very rigid opinions on the whole thing. Elections for 2 commissioner seats will be held November 2010. Any time frame should include the possibility of new commissioner's participation in the selection of a new director. While this might make for interviews, and they can be by phone to begin with, over the holidays or soon thereafter, so be it.

I don't want to see taxpayers paying for 2 director salaries. While others on the Commission think that's not such a bad idea, I think that we have a fiduciary duty not to waste money. Whomever is chosen, I assume will be well qualified in management. We have good deputy directors and supervisors who can help lead the new director into the nuances of the agency. Jay's tenure does not need to overlap.

Commissioners must be the ones to choose the director. The buck stops with us, although you wouldn't know it from our "protocols". Theoretically under the "protocols", the director is the only employee out of a total agency employment of 300, to actually "work" for the Commission. What? Exactly. (Recently we got a new employee that replaced another employee. I asked who was replaced and why and when. This occurred 4 months ago, I never heard about it and was told that it was a "personnel" issue so the deputy director didn't know if they could tell me the particulars or not! So much for the buck stopping with us eh? Although if there was a major problem, you can bet that we'd be the responsible ones and not some staff member.) Anyway, the Commission must make the tough choices and do the drudge work and not leave it to the staff.

There was some talk about help with moving expenses and should we offer to buy someone's house? Buy someone's house? Thankfully, that one didn't get far but paying moving expenses is on the table and I have to wonder - why? Would we offer to pay someone's moving expenses for a planner or an inspector if they were coming from out of the area? Maybe I'm too parsimonious, but I think that if someone wants the job and applies for the job and gets the job, they should maybe think about how they'll get here to actually take the job. We are not head hunting here. We're putting out a job announcement and those who choose to can apply.

Should be interesting.


At May 13, 2010 at 10:44 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

You will get about as far holding off until after the elections as my bill before the legislature got (the one requiring that ACHD be neutral in its ballot language). The good ole boys and girls network is in effect and functions very well. Why should they wait and risk diluting their say in the matter?

At May 14, 2010 at 11:33 AM , Blogger Sara said...

Actually, so far that seems to be something the others will accept. When I brought up that there was an election and the possibility of new commissioners and that those new commissioners should be involved, they agreed.

At May 16, 2010 at 6:56 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Never mind :)


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