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Here’s The Scoop … Another Exit ….From The Lauderdale-By-The -Sea Town Administration …

AND THEN THERE WERE THREE …

Dear Readers …We hear Human Resource /Risk Management Manager Kathy O’Brien has been terminated by the Int. Town Manager after almost a month of being on paid administrative leave and after the results of the inquiry into the payout for former Town Manager Esther Colon…

Kathleen O’Brien was hired as an Accountant I per her Employment Agreement dated January 26, 2005 at an annual salary of $31,200.00 (signed by Baldwin 2/01/05 and O’Brien on Jan. 27, 2005) ..On Jan 25, 2006 she received an “Offer of Continuing Employment” with the 5% COLA (cost of living) giving her an hourly rate of $22.05 … Her next Employment Agreement was dated  March 24,2006 (unsigned by Baldwin and signed by O’Brien 3/24/06) “Offer of Employment-Promotion” to the position of Account Technician with a salary of $48,172.80 …Next was an Employment Agreement “Offer of Continuing Employment” dated April 23, 2007 ( signed by Baldwin 4/1/07 and signed by O’Brien 3/29/07) for an hourly rate of $25.5339 with the COLA increase…

If she was terminated by Ms. Hoffman according to her last employment agreement (as well as her prior Agreements) with the Town dated April 23, 2007  “Offer of Continuing Employment” where it is states she was continuing in the position of Accounting Technician  she was only entitled to the following which is the standard for “At Will” employees thus far from the Public Record Requests …

“This Appointment may be terminated unilaterally, at any time by the Town Manager and need not reflect performance-related reasons.

If this Appointment is terminated by the Town Manager, you shall be entitled to base salary earned through the date of termination.”

There was no Employment Agreement for Ms. O’Brien stating she was the HR/Risk Management Manager and this writer put in a followup request for it …Deputy Town Clerk Nikki Smith phoned me last week to state there was no Employment Agreement for Kathy O’Brien for her HR/Risk Mgr. position …that it had been a “title change” done with a vote of the Commission… Ms. Smith told me she was also going to send me an e-mail stating what she stated in the phone call…I have not received that e-mail …I put in a PRR for the Commission and Commission meeting when that title change took place …I find it rather odd that a Commission would take such a leap in changing an Account Technician who was hired as an Account I two years prior and make that change without having an Employment Agreement to go along with it….

O’Brien was not alone in her “leap” within the Finance Dept. under Baldwin-Colon…

Finance Director Kaola King was hired on Feb 19, 2008 as an Accountant I…by Colon …and on the back page of her agreement was the following..

“Purchasing -give her manual (Kaola does entries and Kathy does updates)

Capital Assets- semi-annual

Grants-monthly (Senior, Bus & annual FDOT, annual EPA)

Upgrades proposed budget book for (o8-09)

Kaola & Kathy- update A/Ps, CRs, G/L”

Ms. King was hired on Feb 20, 2008 as an Accountant I at an hourly rate of $23,7094. On April 1, 2008 Ms King received “Offer of Employment (Promotion)” that gave her a salary of $75,000.00 and promoted her to Finance/Budget  Director..in less than 2 months!…Then on April 11, 2008 she received the COLA recently revealed in the Colon payout inquiry that we are now being told was a precedent “historically” with the passing of the Town’s budget but without the vote of the Commissions …She was now to be paid $83,081.18!…

Ms. King’s Employment Agreements all have the same termination by the Town Manager only allowing for base salary through the date of termination…

As previously posted former Interim Town Manager John Olinzock was an “At Will” Employee also with the same Employment Agreement content of termination of his Assistant TO “Offer of Employment-(Promotion) dated May 19, 2007 (signed by Colon 5/30/07 and signed by Olinzock 5/30/07) for a salary of $65,884.52 and his Assistant Town Manager dated July 2, 2008 (signed by Colon 7/3/08 and signed by Olinzock  7/8/08) Employment Agreements with a pay shown on his last Agreement sent in the PRR of $75,154.22 … I received no agreement for his prior position as Special Projects Manager…

June White’s Employment Agreements …same  termination verbage …for her first one dated July 31, 2007 (signed by Colon 8/8/08 and signed by White 8/6/08) for a salary of $56,057.90…Her “Offer of Continuing Employment” dated August 28,2008 (signed by Colon 8/28/08 and signed by White on 8/28/08) for a salary of $61,038.38 with the 5% COLA increase…

Development Director Jeff Bowman who was a Code Officer prior to his promotion has the same termination statement in his Employment Agreement dated September 8, 2008 (signed by Colon 9/17/08 and signed by Bowman 9/27/08) …His “Offer of Emplyment (Promotion) gave him a salary of $67,166.16 ..I have made a followup PRR for his prior agreements..

Director of Municipal Works Don Prince again…same Employment forms…same termination statements …only entitled to base salary through termination …in his “Offer of Employment (Promotion) dated July 2, 2008 (signed by Colon 7/2/08 and signed by Prince 7/2/080 for as salary of $70,775.25 and again for his “Offer of Continuing Employment” dated July 29.2009 (signed by Colon 7/28/09 and signed by Prince 7/29/09) for as salary of $74,314.01 wit the 5% COLA increase… I have made a followup for the prior agreements made with Mr. Prince before his promotion…

Public Information Officer Steve D’Oliveira has the same form with the same termination of entitled to base salary through termination…per his “Offer of Employment ” dated October 3, 2007 (signed by Colon on 10/4/07 and signed by D’Oliveira on 10/4/07 ) for an hourly rate of $30.0000..

Fire Marshal Steve Paine replaced Fire Marshal Alex Stevenson …Stevenson, as previously posted had same Employment Agreement form …same base salary for termination as the rest of these employees… In his “Offer of Employment” date Sept. 14,2009 (signed by Colon “9/15/2008” [HUH?]and signed by Paine 9/21/09) states “an  hourly rate of $35.00 disbursed monthly upon receipt from Director of Development or Designee”…and that he is an “On Call” employee of the Town and only states “This appointment may be terminated unilaterally, at any time by the Town Manager”.. Hmmm. what about the VFD Fire Chief?…

Of note…according to the 2nd 2010 Income/Expense Report for the VFD from Jan through March …Fire Marshal Paine as he is referred to on the VFD website as “Inspector” as it is stated in the report received a salary of $13,500.00 as well as his $35.00 per hr. from the Town …We are also told that Paine has taken on a greater role within the VFD after the “abandonment” of McIntee (per Chief Perkin’s at his April 2010 monthly report to the Comm.) and is now training the men…going on fire calls  which means further income received …He is rumored to be a possible replacement for Chief Perkins sooner rather than later (Dec. 2010 or Jan 2011)…Talk about your hats !…(and Conflicts?)…

The “Employment Agreement” for Interim Asst. Town Manager Bentley … also hired as an “At Will” employee states the same as the above Baldwin/Colon Agreements per the “Employment Offer Letter dated April 30, 2010 signed by Interim Town Manager Constance Hoffman and signed on May 3, 29010 by Ralph Bentley …There is no vacation/sick leave … just the base salary through date of “separation from the Town” and reimbursement for his expenses that are under section 2 and 5 (cell phone allowance and mileage for Town-related business activities)…

This writer wants to see what Olinzock and O’Brien exited with and if it is any different than what their agreements spell out…(base salary)…The Personnel Purchasing Manual states the agreement usurps the manual and while the manual offers 2 weeks severance in a Resolution in 1991 and accrued Vacation/Sick leave with caps and percentages …the Baldwin/Colon Employment Agreements do not…..It should become public knowledge soon along with any other necessary staff terminations in the upcoming weeks ….. I also want to know if any charges will be coming for their roles in the Colon payout along with Ms. King and whomever else signed off or was involved including Ms. Colon who could not have been uninvolved …in this writer’s opinion…

more to come….

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