I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Envelope Please......

The Independent Florida Sun has officially requested, under Florida Public Records law, my list of potential Administrative/Professional positions to cut from the Personnel Planning Document (PPD). I’ve kept this list in a sealed envelope for a couple of weeks now, and I’ve waited for my counterparts on the board to bring their lists. None were forthcoming, and after the four hour workshop last Friday where I asked each board member, one by one, if they wanted to discuss any further cuts to the PPD prior to approval, and none responded, I realized I did not have three votes to pursue additional cuts, so I did not push further on the issue. Cooler heads did prevail, democracy worked, and the PPD was approved at the regular board meeting by a 3-2 margin as I had predicted.

The vote on the PPD happened last night and none of these positions that I had in the envelope were discussed or abolished, as a majority of the board felt that the PPD did not/could not sustain any additional position cuts. I voted against the PPD both times (April Meeting and last night) because I felt there were additional cuts that could have been made at the top. The majority of the phone calls and emails from my constituents were also pushing for more administrative level position cuts. But I did not feel it would be to anyone's benefit to continue to push the superintendent if there was no support from my fellow board members on the issue.
The roughly $700K in potential savings that could have been achieved through elimination of the below listed positions, ironically, equals roughly the same dollar amount as what will be saved if Carver Century is closed. ($680K).

No decisions are easy, and people need to know that my initial proposal was for ALL employees to take a modest pay cut so that students would not suffer and also so NO Employees would lose their jobs and no positions would be eliminated. That initial proposal was blown out of the water. Regardless, I know we need to keep looking at budget cuts. The choices are only going to continue to be more and more difficult; None of these savings measures will be pleasant, people will be angry, and everyone will be looking at everyone else to accept budget cuts. But we will have a balanced budget at the end of this process, I’m confident of that.

In compliance with state law and in response to the below request, I am providing the contents of my sealed envelope, below.

>>> duwayne 05/21/08 10:20 >>>

Jeff: I'm submitting a public records request for the contents of your
sealed envelope containing what you describe as a “list of potential
Administrative/Professional positions to cut.” Under Florida public
records law, and according to the school district's attorney, this is a
public record, which you must disclose. I would like a copy before the
end of the day. If you have any questions about this request, please
call me at the office 438-8115. Thanks for your cooperation. --Duwayne

Duwayne Escobedo
Independent News
Pensacola, Fla.
850-438-8115 office

1. Associate Superintendent for Public and Interagency Affairs (duties to be delegated to Admin. Secretary or Deputy Superintendent)
2. (1) Manager IV –Construction Projects
3. (1) Safety Officer 1 Protection Services
4. Admin Secretary II Protection Services

Note—Protection Services Division Chief and one Safety Officer 1 to fall under Risk Management at Garden Street.

5. (1) Auditor from office of Internal Auditor
6. (1) Computer Operator from IT
7. (1) Programmer/Analyst I from IT
8. (1) Director I-Elementary Education
9. (1) Director I-High School Education

Note---Combine duties of Director of Middle and High School Education into one position, (following retirement of Director of High School Education) into a “Director of Secondary Education” poition. Eliminate one director of Elementary Education,(One director retiring after this school year) leaving one director for Elementary Education.

10. (1) Subject Area Specialist—Social Studies.

Note---Duties of Social Studies Subject Area Specialist to be delegated to each school’s Principal.

Estimated Total Savings $700,000.00

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