Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Pension boredom office to relocate?

If you’re not into county pension board/office stuff, you might want to skip this one.

Then again, maybe not.

As the News Sentinel reported (click right smack here) a week or so ago, the city’s pension board or its officials or whatnot are looking into a proposed charter amendment that would require that all votes on board action take a majority of all seven board members to pass.

Who knows if it will pass. Politics are involved. You know how that goes.

Anyhoo, the county’s financial minister, John Troyer, wants the county pension board to look into the same proposal.

But, when he suggested it during the board meeting this past Monday, other members met with some blank stares.

(Yeah. I’m not too sure this one is gonna fly.)

Troyer was upset because board members are talking about moving the office from the Deathstar’s third floor over to Landmark Plaza, which is at the corner of Papermill and Northshore drives.

Last month, the board, in a 4-1 vote, agreed to let pension board Executive Director Kim Bennett look further into the proposal.

The county pension board, though, has 9 members, including four commissioners. It also includes county Mayor Tim Burchett, but let’s face it, he doesn’t like meetings, so Mad Dog John is his official stand-in. ANYWAY, as I was saying, last month, the four commissioners bolted early from the meeting to grab some grub at commission Chairman Mike Hammond’s monthly luncheon. That left JT and four others.

And when Troyer voted against the proposal to move, he thought he had won. (JT figured you needed five “yes” votes to get something approved.)

He didn’t.

Pension board attorney, former county law director and (newly appointed) nemesis to the county’s administration Richard Beeler (because Burchett doesn't want his firm to be the county's bond counsel) said it takes a majority of a quorum to approve a board action – not five.

JT didn’t like that.

The Actual Relocation

One a side note, Bennett said it would cost about $50,000 to move the office and about $32,000 (at least) a year more to maintain operations.

She handed out a worksheet, listing the four “cons” and the 11 “pros,” which made me chuckle.
I agree that her office needs more space. It’s like a matchbox right now. And, it’s not very accessible to the seniors who make up 91 percent of the office’s clientele.

But her other reasons?

“More flexibility in future needs for office.” Really? We hiring more people in that pension office?
“Free up floor space in the (Deathstar) for expansion.” Really? Is The Man with the Badge finally going to get that intake center he always wanted?

“Participants perception of independence.” Come on. Just go to a board meeting. The attorneys like to remind the administration every ten minutes that the board is independent.

“Larger board room available for board meetings.” Huh? There’s like a 100 big rooms in the Deathstar you can use.

OK, I’m rambling.

Count on the board approving this next month.

Count on Burchett, I mean JT, voting against it. (And maybe a few other folks.)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

so there is no accountability? No one can tell these people to suck it up? They aren't in those offices 8 hours a day are they?

Amazing we set these boards up as "independent" and they obtain this sense of self-importance and entitlement.

Scrap the whole charter system . . . it is so screwed up we can't tell daylight from dark.