Why is there so much overtime in the prison system? Why are we not hiring people for straight time and saving a lot of money?
All across corporate America the blue collar worker is being sacrificed for bonuses.
Teachers don't want to give in. Government workers don't want to give in...
I would be willing to not have a pay raise in order to hire more people so I wouldn't be expected to do the job of two people and the job would be done better than if I were to do the job of two myself.
Actually with the benefit packages that most employees receive it is often cheaper to pay over time than higher new people.
How do you know that county workers are not willing to negotiate? I have to wonder if the union itself, not the members are the problem. Let's keep in mind that union leaders are often time high in seniority so they are not in dnger of layoff so they don't bring negotiable offers to the membership. They want what they have and all they can get and they are willing to safcrifice employees at the bottom of the seniority list so they retain comfortable and safe positions. I'm not a big fan of public employee unions. There was a time when they protected employees from politics but now the protection is for the most senior people. From many sources, it seems the new employees are the work horses and management do not do their jobs. I would love to be a bug o the wall and learn the truth.
Mr. Toole, with all due respect, you really have no idea what you are talking about. Is your hair too tight? Have you asked yourself why you lost your bid for Controller and Council? Have you asked yourself why no one calls you for advice? You are just a bag of wind that screwed up and screwed Pittston. Millage is dedicated for the debt. What you suggest is that the County uses that for wasteful spending and then add another 20+ percent to cover the debt. Pribula had a hard time selling 2% and you want 20%? Perhaps the budget for the Day Reporting was missed, but that falls back on Warden Piazza and Budget and Finance Chief Pusateri (Petrilla). Pribula was running the entire County and educating the inept Council. He was also dealing with some members of Council overstepping their authority by negotiating with unions on the side. I'm sure a few ethics violations were evident. Perhaps that is why the Council was hesitant to pass a stringent Ethics Policy. The Budget left by the Commissioners was a joke. The amended Budget is more than deliverable and the organization remains top heavy with management. Lawton has had more than enough time to implement the new organizational structure. Perhaps he can skip a breakfast of luncheon boondoggle once in awhile to move the County forward.
TruthBeTold, I get a real kick out of people who begin a criticism using the old standard, "With all due respect" but you use it and immeadiately begin to insult Mr. Toole personally. I would have preferreed if you left the high school insults in the playground and addressed Mr Toole's very well done piece on the county's progress. You can most certainly disagree with any or all points made by Mr. Toole but at the very least, try to be factual and adult in the way you do it. Personally, I appreciate the insight and effort put into his post.
Reply from Wil Toole
Looks like I must have peed in your cheerios at some point in time.
Your contradiction of my assessment isn't just wrong but your entire statement is flawed. Which of us is right? I can prove my point but you can't prove yours. I challenge you to take out a copy of you county real estate tax (if you own property) and show me (us) where on that bill is a dedicated debt tax. You won't find it because the county does not have a dedicated debt tax. I assume you believe that because the county is required to pay the debt payment out of taxes collected then that is a dedicated debt tax. Sorry buddy but you're flat out wrong and obviously don't have a clue as to how government budgets work or how the Pennsylvania Tax Enabling Act works.
As for my personal ability to manage a local government, I can only reply that under my stewardship of the City of Pittston, when I left, every road had been recently paved. Every park was in pristine condition. We had an award winning recycling program, fully staffed Street and Sanitation Departments. The police department was double what it is today, the police desk was covered 24/7 by full time qualified police desk clerks and citizens could walk into city hall 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and talk to a real person. Today, Pittston has 7 police officers, the doors are locked at 4 PM and are not open during the weekend. We had brand new street department equipment, a front end loader, a backhoe, street cleaner, sewer clean out equipment, a wood chipper, a mounted patrol officer, the first bicycle downtown patrol in the Valley and we had a motorcycle. We had a brand new Street/Sanitation Dept's. building and computerized state of the art gas pumps that were capable of tracking the fuel used by each vehicle. The city garbage fee was $120 year and today it is $160. Real estate taxes have doubled 3 times since I left office.
Finally, the city debt was approximately $400,000 and today it is $10 million dollars. And you think I screwed up the City? There was a reason that the International City County Manager's Association (ICCMA) recognized me as a professional municipal manager and there was a reason that the ICCMA listed the City of Pittston in the Who's Who of Municipal Governments as the only city in NE PA with a professional municipal manager.
You are certainly entitled to your opinion but the problem is that you confuse opinion with facts. As to why I lost the Controller and the County Council election is because I didn't get enough votes. It isn't rocket science, I simply didn't receive enough votes.
In closing, I will fall back on that old saying, "Better to be thought a fool than to open your mouth and erase all doubt."
Wil Toole, ICCMA Recognized Professional Municipal Manager
Maybe if they had a supervisor do his job. To monitor the employees to see if they show up for work on time. This would save a lot not having to put in time clocks.