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Here’s The Scoop … Icing On The Cake … Next Stop Miami Lakes? … Part 5 …

WHAT ABOUT THE INGREDIENTS ?…

Dear Readers … As the former Town Managers make their way through the turnstile after a dismount from the merry-go-round and seek out the numerous Town/City Manager positions currently available the real question is…What kind of “icing” will they have on their “cake”?… As previously posted it appears these Managers have quite a nice racket going… Not only do they receive big bucks for salary…along with most receiving at least a year’s severance…they also walk away with wads of green for unused and accrued vacation/ sick leave…and we hear most times it is all paid out at the salary they receive when they depart!… This means that if your ex-Town/City Manager began at a salary of $55,000 or $75,000 in the Manager position or in a prior position before being promoted to Town/City Manager and are terminated or resign while receiving an annual salary of $146,000 or $160,000…they are now in receipt of the whole amount of their vacation/sick leave payouts at their departing salary!… That little tidbit should have taxpayers everywhere contacting their Commissioners and stating “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore!”…. It has been covered from time to time in recent years in newspapers that the pensions from government workers are certain to be what sends municipalities deep into financial tailspins … Now to find the dirty little secret of the “leave” they are receiving as well for vacation/sick leave as well as “deferred compensation” …It’s like being  run over by the truck that then backs up and runs over you for a second time!…

In the course of what has transpired in Lauderdale-By-The- Sea since former Town Manager Colon was terminated in a 4-1 vote (Comm. Clottey was the lone vote of no to the termination) on April 20th, this writer has gone back over approximately 3 years of material requested from the Town and obtained from sources as well as looking at other municipalities to see what’s what in the contracts for our Town and others along with what might be offered to candidates at the present time……Of course some of that information will be held close to the vest ….for now…

If former Town Manager Colon decides to throw her hat in the ring for the Miami Lakes Town Manager position in her hometown…she may want to check out the May 11, 2010 agenda backup first……

May 11., 2010..

Mayor’s memo -Item 12A-Mayor Pizzi wrote “Financial Stability; Budget Reductions and Spending Cuts”…He included the following…”Eliminate Manager’s stipend, allow car allowance and cap salary at no higher than $135,000″…

Item 12 C was the Vice Mayor’s “New Town Manager’s Contract and Advertising of Position”…It stated the following “As per the Charter, Article III -Administrative, Section 3.1- Town Manager “The terms, conditions and compensation of the Town Manager shall be established by the Council.”… It continued with..”Since we are in the midst of advertising for a new Town Manager, it is timely that we have a discussion on the salary and benefits we are willing to offer. Hopefully, this will round up a group of individuals that are ready to come to work for the “terms, conditions and compensation” advertised, and would eliminate a lot of negotiations back and forth. It is my intention that the council participates in a discussion on this subject and we come to conclusions so we can properly advertise. “…

Attached was a copy of the last Manager’s contract “for reference” along with a “preliminary analysis of estimated cost” to use in starting the process.. The Resolution #09-711 gave the outgoing Town Manager a salary of $168,300.00/ ???? for 2-4% CPI/ $2,400 for a sign-on bonus/ $8,113.00 Adjustment to original salary for total of $176,413.60/ $8,415.00 for a 5% bonus/ ???? for Annual Evaluation/ $14,000.00 Police Dept. involvement/ $25,245.00 broken down as $6,883.00 towards def. comp (deferred compensation) program, plus $18,361.00 for FRS (pension plan)/ $500.00 for professional dues and subscriptions/ $500.00 civic & non profit organizations/ $4,800.00 stipend for expenses/ $9,000.00 for car all0wance/ $18,298.00 for Major medical &dental for Mgr. & spouse/ $468.00 Life Insurance/ $1,800.00 for Disability Insurance/$9,222 for 20 days vacation/ $5,533.00 for 12 days sick leave/ $1,768.00 for Bond= Total $278,480.00…

Also they included “Job Opening” for the position of Town Manager in Aug. 2008 ..it had Salary Range depending on Qualifications… the description of what the job entailed …much the same as most municipalities including LBTS… Minimum Qualifications… Bachelor Degree in Public, Business Admin. or a related field and 10 years progressively responsible admin. and management in public sector, 5 years of which have been at senior management position. Master’s degree and knowledge of admin. and operational functions of municipal gov. are preferred.

“The ideal candidate is a community-oriented individual who is responsive not just to the elected officials, but the community at large. Other important qualities will be someone who is progressive, creative, ethical, receptive to new ideas, strategic, and responsive. The individual must consider customer service to be an essential part of public service and must have outstanding communication skills.”

BC- Hmmm….former TM Colon….Hmmmm…..

It included a description of the Town and Location… “Miami lakes incorporated on December 5,2000 and is one of thirty-five municipalities in Miami-Dade County, Florida. Conveniently located just 16 miles north of Downtown Miami and 10 miles from Miami International Airport, the Town encompasses approximately 6.5 square miles. Miami lakes is home to approximately 27,300 residents and has an annual budget of $18 million (General Fund) and $7.2 million (Capital Fund). The Town is governed by a seven-member Council and operates under a Mayor-Council-Manager form of government.”

“Salary and benefits will be commensurate with experience. Interested candidates should forward letter of interst, resume and salary history to Town of Miami Lakes via email to: [email protected] by August 1, 2008.”

BC- Hmmm…former TM Colon….Hmmmm…..

The employment agreement for the outgoing Miami Lakes Town Manager looks very familiar indeed!…It looks much like former TM Colon’s May 22, 2007 contract …and interestingly the ML Town’s law firm…Weiss, Serota (also the LBTS Town law firm since 2008) signed it “Approved as to form and legal sufficiency”…while Colon’s 2007 contract was signed by our former Town Atty. “Approved as to Form”..not “Legal Sufficiency”…

BC-Hmmm…. Telling?…Why not Approved as to “Legal Sufficiency” by former Town Atty. Cherof?…

A look at the two Employment Agreements side by side show a much more detailed agreement drawn up for the Miami Lakes TM…I also compared them to the 1st version of the Colon contract sent from the former TM to the former TAtty. in 2007 (prev. post)…The Miami Lakes Agreement spelled out the choice of paying the terminated TM (Town Manager) either in a lump sum upon termination or within 30 days after to be made by the Town Council…The LBTS termination section has no such sub-section… Miami Lakes has a 5 year term of employment with a chance to negotiate 180 days prior while still spelling out the TM serves at the pleasure of the Town Council…The LBTS contract has no term (although the 1st version sent to the TAtty. by Colon did have the same 5 year term (2012) but with a 90 day notice or the term extends automatically for an additional 2 yr. term – Ft. Lauderdale operates this way)…Miami Lakes TM was to receive a 4% cost of living increase annually …LBTS TM has no such sub-section although TM Colon did in 2 yrs go from $146,743.00 to $160, 541.94…(the 1st version sent in stated in Section 7 that the TM would “receive increase in base salary and/or benefits in amounts and made at the same time as similar consideration is given other employees generally. Employee waives the cost of living for the first five years of the agreement”…That did not make it to the final agreement.)… The ML- TM contract has a sub-section under the annual Performance Review that states based upon the review the TM will based on the sole discretion of the Council receive a salary increase or additional benefits…LBTS agreement has no such sub-section…(the 1st version did not have it either)…The ML-TM received a 1 years severance…The LBTS-TM received a one years severance …(the 1st version asked for a 5 years severance …courtesy of the “idea” coming from former LBTS-TM and Colon’s boss Bob Baldwin per notes from the former TAtty.)….ML- TM received annually 20 days vacation leave and he accrued 10 days when signing on..he also received 12 days sick/personal leave annually with additional days added upon signing on to the position…He was not allowed to use 7 consecutive days without Council permission and on Oct. 1st of each year the Town was to make payment for the unused vacation/sick leave as of Sept. 30 of that year at the TM salary rate of Sept. 30 of that year. NO vacation leave shall be carried over to the following year/Unused accrued sick/personal leave not cashed out SHALL be carried over into the following year…LBTS- TM Colon received 15 vacation days added onto her current “bank” of vacation upon signing on for TM and then the vacation leave was to accumulate as provided under the rules and regulations for other managerial employees of the Town including payout for unused vacation leave upon termination..Sick leave was a 10 day “credit” added to her “bank” of sick leave when assuming the position with the same payout (the 1st version stated the credit of 15 days vacation leave/ 10 days sick leave “Thereafter, Employee shall accrue, and have credited to his/her personal account, vacation and sick leave at the same rate as other general employees of the Employer”..meaning cap and percentage)…

BC-Hmmm… former LBTS TM Colon… Miami Lakes TM Colon?….Hmmmm…If the ML-Council takes a pass after doing some homework……there’s always  May 11, 2010 Item 12B…”Hiring Finance Director”…Their Finance Director  resigned to pursue other career opportunities and the current & newly resigned TM wrote a memo that states anew Finance Director “should be hired as soon as possible”…

BC- Readers who think Ms. Colon would not be interested …..should think again…
LBTS Regular Commission Meeting ….Minutes from April 10, 2007 …
NB-“J Discussion and/or action regarding Town Manager Robert Baldwin letter
dated April 06, 2007.
Town Attorney Cherof read the letter sent by Town Manager Robert Baldwin regarding his
resignation.
Mayor Parker called for a motion to accept the letter of resignation.
Commission McIntee discussed a conversation with Mr. Baldwin where Mr. Baldwin stated he could
be talked into postponing his resignation to 90 days. Commissioner McIntee indicated that he wanted
to have Esther Colon to continue on as Town Manager for the 90 days and possibly continue on after
that.
Mayor Parker asked Assistant Town Manager Colon if she were willing to continue on as Town
Manager temporarily.
Assistant Town Manager Esther Colon read a letter that stated her thanks to the elected officials and
community members. She stated that this meeting would be the last she is attending as Assistant
Town Manager. She stated that she would return to her post as the Town’s finance director on
4/24/07.
Commissioner McIntee asked Assistant Town Manager Colon if she would stay in her temporary
position for 90 days.
Ms. Colon stated she would consider it, but she stated that she needs to do what is best for her. She
further stated that she would need time to decide if she will accept for the 90 day term.”

BC- If only she stuck to her April 10, 2007 letter…if only!…

http://www.miamilakes-fl.gov/c-public_info/index.php

http://www.lauderdalebythesea-fl.gov/town/arc-meetings.htm

Next part 6…

more to come…

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