Friday, June 28, 2013

Fire Vinyard and Littlejohn for subversion of public interests!

Bruce Ritchie writes in today’s Florida Current that,
 “DEP wants to award $571,961 in bonuses to 269 regulatory employees based on criteria including faster permit processing and feedback from customers including permit applicants.
Rep. Mark Pafford, D-West Palm Beach and member of the Legislative Budget Commission, says he's concerned that the bonus will reward faster permit approval at the expense of environmental protection.
"I don't have any problem with people getting bonuses, especially state employees," Pafford said. "The question is, are some of those dollars going to be used to lessen the time required for reviewing applications?  And will it limit the scope of a thorough examination of those applications for projects?"
Pafford, is also the ranking Democrat on the House Agriculture & Natural Resources Subcommittee.
Doug Martin, legislative director and spokesman for the state employees union, said it more accurately,
 "I’ve never heard of bonuses being given for not enforcing the law and being paid out of funds from employees who were dismissed for doing their jobs."
And, what’s worse, the toxic, anti-environment senator from Eustis, Alan Hayes, who has introduced some of the most damaging bills in the history of the legislature, is defending the idiocy.  Given his record and galactic ignorance of environmental management technology, unfortunately, no one will be surprised.
But, this is just another ignorant management decision by CEO Scott and his boys, DEP secretary Herschel Vinyard and DEP minion Jeff Littlejohn, who should know better.  Is there no end to their ignorance of common public agency management practices?
As a career manager and agency head, I have never heard of providing raises just for issuing regulatory permits in fewer days than the law allows.  Regulatory staff must follow the law.  They are required to follow very strict legal guidelines that, frankly, may not be very efficient, but they are the law.  Most inefficiencies result from having to accommodate all the varied public interests involved in issuing a permit, including those who will be negatively impacted by the permit if granted.  Every legitimate interest must be heard and considered. 
Rewards or bonuses can and should be given to an employee who finds or develops a procedure that will make the process more efficient but such proposals should be carefully reviewed before implementation to insure they will not inadvertently weaken the agency’s obligations under the law.  Only then, should they be made part of the process. 
Vinyard and Littlejohn apparently want to reward individual staff members for taking short cuts.  This will encourage regulatory hot-dogging, unauthorized rogue decisions by individuals, which would be a blatant subversion and perversion of public interest.
CEO Scott should fire the boys at DEP for incompetence and Hayes should be removed from elected office immediately for being virtually devoid of good sense.  Then CEO Scott should donate all that reelection money he’s raising, projected to eventually exceed $100 million, to raises for all state employees and conservation land acquisition, and go back to the private sector where defrauding the federal government and public taxpayers of Medicaid and Medicare funds seems to be a very lucrative common practice.
The whole thing smells to high heaven but if you want to read the entire disgusting story anyway, Tap HERE.


  1. The same thing is true at the WMDs. Performance is based SOLELY on how quick a permit is issued. At least that is what I'm told, and evidence is easy to find to corroborate.

  2. The sad thing that you and I know is that all permit applications are not equal. So a reviewer deals with a DOT project or a marina, vs. noticed generals or mom and pop stores. It is not equal and you cannot reward them for "doing their job". You can bet if I knew that as a reviewer, I'd stamp every permit that came across my desk, and quickly. They just don't understand the process. It is so frustrating...

  3. Being consistent is what regulation should be about. In my previous work life (regulatory mitigation compliance), I always tried to treat clients (i.e. permittee) equally. I always felt if you were consistent in your job you couldn't be criticized. I found out that that doesn't work if the client is a friend to a politician, or heaven forbid, the Governor. I would always try to work with clients (e.g., timeframe, field adjustments, etc.) to bring their projects back into compliance. However, if you did your job properly, you could not just ignore the non-compliance status. Unfortunately, this did not always set well with management, since they were the ones that had to deal with complaints from the well connected permittees. I guess if permit reviewers get bonuses for quick issuance of permits, it is only fair for compliance folks to get bonuses for ignoring permit non-compliance. What do you think?

  4. Is Connie eligible?

  5. Would someone please print the list of employee's receiving said bonus, how much & what department?