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Rockville Mayor promises protection


Says employees who come forward should be protected

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Published on: Thursday, May 03, 2012

By Christa Puccio

ROCKVILLE  - Current city employees, skeptical of a process to investigate managers in the wake of recent harassment,  personnel file tampering, illegal disclosure of medical information  and discrimination allegations say they are wary of the city’s ability to protect them should they come forward with testimony.

This follows in the wake The Sentinel’s month-long investigation into complaints lodged by at least five different former employees.

Mayor Phyllis Marcuccio, said she wants to guarantee current employees are protected if they come forward. “I’m sure that it’ll be in our contract agreement with the firm we hire. We certainly have been negotiating with them in that direction. Without a doubt that will be a prime concern,” she said.

The acting City manager said she is unsure, as of yet, how the city will handle complaints by its employees. “I've worked on a response, but want to confer with the outside firm that will be handling the investigation before finalizing,” said Jenny Kimball, acting city manager.  

Kimball also has not yet released the name of the firm selected to investigate the claims nor how much money the investigation will cost the city.

The Mayor and Council held an executive session on Monday to discuss “a personnel matter, independent personnel review, and to consult with council to obtain legal advice regarding mandatory referral.”  After the executive session, Mayor Marcuccio provided a statement on the topic.  

“We received an update earlier this evening from the Acting City Manager and City Attorney on the effort to respond to concerns and complaints raised by former city employees,” said Marcuccio.  “[The acting city manager and city attorney] are proceeding quickly to secure an outside law firm to complete the work.  After considering several options, they are currently in the process of entering into a contract with the preferred firm, just to bring you up to speed.”

One Rockville resident who addressed the Mayor and Council was also skeptical of the proposed investigation.  “I am of the opinion that no person who receives a paycheck from the City of Rockville and held a managerial position during the period of time that these claims were made should be selecting anyone to investigate these claims,” said Anita Summerour.  “I further believe that no government or private investigator organization in the city limits of Rockville should investigate these claims.  I believe that the investigation of these claims should take place at the state level.  The complaints that have been made are very serious and former and current city staff and all of the citizens of Rockville need to be assured that an impartial and thorough investigation is going to be conducted.  My own personal recollection of blacks working for the city of Rockville is that we collected the trash, cut the grass and dug the holes.  I can also recall the sense of pride I felt when I began to see blacks sitting in offices at city hall, patrolling my neighborhood in police cars and most of all occupying the chairs where you sit tonight.  To read the Sentinel articles concerning the working environment in the City of Rockville government is disheartening and offensive to me as a citizen of Rockville.”

The Mayor and Council did not comment on Summerour’s suggestions at the meeting.

Rich Hajewski, former director of human resources for the City of Rockville, commended the work of the employees that served the city with him.  “Ethically, I wouldn’t comment on anyone’s personal performance,” said Hajewski, who retired in 2007 after his 17 year tenure.  “As a whole, I thought that the employees that worked for the city were terrific and a great bunch of people and very hard working.  One of the things we tried to maintain was an open door policy where we allowed employees to come to us with any issue they might have.  It was very successful for us.  Not always 100 percent of everyone was happy, but for the most part, I felt that we made people feel like they had a voice and we could help resolve issues for them.”

Reader Comments - 44 Total

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Posted By: Who Cares? On: 5/11/2012

Title: fallsgrove resident

Yes many of us live in constant fear of loosing outjobs. We have seen forst hand how they cleaned house of most of the older workers. The ones with the most expierence for the most part have left the city. Others are being worked over so they will quit or retire. The ones who hold out get poor evaluations in preperation for termination.
The person caught providing sex was caught several times at different locations.
Many of us know she mistreated many staff under her. This person used to work upstairs at one time.
The deputy director carries on just like the director. Not too many like the PW Director and even more do not trust the guy at all.
How many staff have been driven out of PW's ? The administrative side staff look like they are just beat to hell. Very few smile and the one engineer who left to go to WSSC seemed very unhappy. She reported to Ding.
Martha left to go to the police, Lordus went to ISD several years ago and Christen went to WSSC. All reported to Susan F.
I was just told that Berg is considered to be Senior Staff? When did this happen? How can someone who is the PIO be a that highly paid? Was Neil considered to be Senior Staff?
I had to look at this for myself and also found out that other staff are now contract positions. Sure looks like Ullery lived up to his name in city hall and took care of the minions by creating more contract positions. Guess they can all retire much faster than the rest of us poor slobs grinding through the sweat shop everyday.
It is amazing how the city managers office has grown since Ullery came on board.

Posted By: scared to death city employee On: 5/10/2012

Title: I agree this is a mean joke

I agree completely with the comments made by Dedicated Employee. Why should any person trust the city at this point?
We are well beyond the ability to trust anyone due to the actions of the city manager and other senior staff.
I reallly do think that this is nothing but another cover up by the city.
By using this firm is the real intention to shut up staff once and for all, by discrediting those who dared to speak oput against the abusive machine created by Scott?
Will the mayor and council turn on us employees?
How many tens of thousands of dollars will be spend retaining this high paid lobbying firm?
Think about this; why would the city enter into a complete i nvestigation and open the city up to facts that could be used against the city by the attornies working for the employees? Seriously, pease someone give me a answer and I smell more of the same from Rockville

Posted By: Dedicated Employee On: 5/10/2012

Title: Mean Joke

This investigation is a mean joke on the employees and the residents. Employees are fearful that this investigation is another City scheme to prove management’s innocence and target employees. The employees’ jail will become the “big house” and the residents’ wallets will become lighter.
Exactly what does the City Attorney’s e-mail that was sent to all the employees mean? Specifically, “The City is committed…to ensuring that employees who participate in the investigation are free from unlawful retaliation.” It’s not that simple. How would the City ensure this without a case-by-case investigation? Don’t think for one minute that the City is going take action based on the employee’s word. The employee would have to retain an attorney to prove unlawful retaliation.
What constitutes unlawful retaliation? If not unlawful, it would be lawful. Unlawful is defined as illegal. Lawful is defined as allowed by law. Is control and verbal/mental abuse unlawful or lawful?
Left unsaid by the City Attorney is whether the names of employees who participate in the investigation will be disclosed to management and supervisors. It is possible and highly probable that the end result of this investigation will clear management of all wrongful actions. If so, nothing will change. It will be business as usual and employees will be subjected to lawful retaliation.
The solution will be more costly, mandatory training. The LEED and HPO trainings were a waste of money and time. Apparently, many supervisors either played hooky or slept during the trainings because nothing changed.
Yes, there are good managers at the City, but they do not receive support from upper management, so the good ones eventually leave.
Management works at getting rid of the knowledgeable, honest, caring old-timers so they can replace them with staff willing to do management’s bidding to attain status in the secret society.
The investigative firm was hired by management to clear management, and will be paid for with taxpayers’ money. Where is the advocate for the employees?
Pray for us.

Posted By: Tom M. On: 5/10/2012

Title: End N Sight?

Many of us have been following these articles for weeks and there is no end in sight.
The managers are still with Rockville and all we have is an announcement that a investigative firm has been selected.
I cannot imagine being the new city manager and being faced with trying to restore morale and ethics in the city. In addition termination of many key senior staff. I sure the city does not intend to keep these poor managers....tell us this is not being considered? I for one do not want to hear about sending these people to more training. Better to train new staff and start over.

Posted By: Scott On: 5/10/2012

Title: Investigation firm

Hopefully the Sentinel can find out the primary reason that the firm of Saul Ewing LLP was chosen and obtain a copy of their contract. Specifically what will be the scope of the investigation.
This is from their website;
"We defend those accused of crime in the course of occupational activities, civil-fraud proceedings, and regulatory-enforcement matters. We also provide compliance counseling to companies in regulated industries."
Not that I do not trust the mayor and council, but management has a history of covering up the facts. has the mayor and council been doublecrossed once again?
Was this company hired to limit the liability of the city by exposing if any employees rights were violated???
I understand that the mayor and council have been sidelined from general management activities.
Maybe this would be a good time to make some changes in the city code to allow for a bit more oversight.
Just my 2 cents!

Posted By: Fallsgrove resident On: 5/9/2012

Title: Keep it Up

I want to encourage all the Rockville employees to continue to come forward with their concerns. As a taxpayer i am sickened to hear how fearful these employees are.
I cant believe that a supervisor was caught having sex at City Hall and still has a job. I am disgusted with the city.

Posted By: Looking for a job. On: 5/9/2012

Title: I Hate it Here

I am a current city employee, one of many jeapordizing my job by writing this.
All employees were told via email that an outside firm had been hired to conduct an investigation and that anyone who came forward would not be subject to "unlawful retaliation". What a joke!.
This invesigation is being handled the same way the first one was as mentioned in a previous post. I suspect it will provide the same results - none.
In following this story, and reading employee comments i can say that everything i have read is quite true.
I know that many employees within the Public Works Dept. are terrified of the managers. Managers such as the Deputy Director of Utilities and the Public Works Administrator. These "managers" have made life miserable for many employees. The Public Woks Dept. cannot retain a scretary because of the P.W Administrator. This individual thrives on belittling lower level staff with comments such as "you dont know who i work for" or "i'll show you how much power i have". 5 or 6 secretaries have left or been fired because of her. Numerous complaints have been made to H.R about this person, but she still has her job.
The Depuy Director of Utilities is no different. Many employees have either witnessed or been subject to her screaming and publicly berating of staff.
I wonder how many more employees in P.W will leave or will be forced to leave as a direct result from the gross negligence of H.R and mismanagement of P.W Administrator, Deputy Director of Utilities.
It's no secret within that department that employee evaluations are passed around like candy and often edited by managers who do not even supervise that specific employee.
It is sad to think that the astounding behavior and the gross mismanagement of individuals such as the Deputy Director of Utilities and the Public Works Administrator have become the benchmark of what Public Works is about.

Posted By: Bozo the employee clown. Gotta laugh or you will cry all day! On: 5/9/2012

Title: Gazette

Thanks to the Sentinel for reporting the story about the city.
If we had to limit ourselves to reading the stories in the local Gazette one would think there was one EEOC complaint that was dismissed and some minor problems with how the Sentinel reference the city evaluation process. HOGWASH! Get with the program and investigate instead of listening to PIO Tokyo Rose for the city news. Some newspapers just waste good paper. Get the point?
As a current city employee, I can say what has been mentioned in the paper is nothing but sugar coating. Senior staff prepares a budget that is fat with extras for the senior staff like a huge 10% raise. The mayor questioned this raise and the old gang of three over ruled her.
No employee dare to complain to HR, since doing so will lead to extra time breaking rocks after the punishment is handed down. No complaints make to past the city manager.
We are supposed to have a personnel appeals board. Ha Ha.
Mayor no employee in years has been able to initiate this process. The last time this body met was many years ago when the city unlawfully terminated three long time staff persons. The city lost the appeal and some cash thanks to Bruce R.
Guess who runs the sick leave bank? Why it is not a rep from AAME or FOP, our HR Director has taken over the sick leave bank. Someone check the Policy and Procedures Manual. The manual does not say Vargas controls the award of leave from the bank. Yet this is typical of the do as I say city policy.
Staff is told any HR appeal is to the city manager or you can file against the city in court. Yeah right, just as soon as you file they would fire you immediately.
The city is very adept at keeping investigations within the confines of upper management. M. Johnson seemed to be on top of her game, but you can bet that Vargas did nothing but order more training. See this way the 4 day a week staff can justify their job.
Read the articles where Eric Rose the former plumbing inspector was subject to racial comments and the investigation ended at Vargas who had staff go through more training.
What a lousy joke! Training incompetent or just plain nasty managers will change nothing. The proof is to look at the mess the city is in right now.
The city must stop this cover up before the real dirt comes out.
Just fire the despicable abusive managers and let us move on already. Sounds like someone has either no courage or has something to hide, or both!

Posted By: Rockville Resident On: 5/9/2012

Title: To: John Q and others

First things first. I don't know where people got the idea that a survey or questionnaire was being sent to employees, and that is how they must communicate back to the investigating law firm. If you go back and listen to the statement the Mayor read, you will hear her say that the law firm has been hired to conduct an internal investigation of various workplace matters. The law firm will mail information concerning the investigation to the residences of all City employees. Employees who participate in the investigation will be protected from any retaliation. The law firm has been asked to do a prompt and thorough investigation, and the Mayor encouraged all employees with information that could aid in the investigation to participate.
While it isn't totally clear how information will be gathered, there was no mention of surveys, forms, etc. I would guess the letters will indicate how the employees can provide input, and I do hope it isn't only through written correspondence. What often happens in this cases is phone lines are set up for people to call into, or off-site meetings arranged.
Now let me address John Q's comments directed to me. This is not a legislative issue, it is an administrative issue. There is no issue with land use, ordinances, laws, or anything else under the purvey of the Mayor and Council. All employee matters (supervision, hiring, firing, etc) fall under the City Manager, as does the everyday delivery of services. When I wrote that the Mayor and Council did not know about what was gong on, I was referring to the investigation you said occurred 2 ½ years ago. Of course they know of what is going on now.
As for hiring and training, the only positions the M&C hire are the City Clerk, the City Attorney and the City Manager....period. The other staff in the Clerk's office and the Attorney's office fall under the City Manager's office. The M&C have no say in the day-to-day operations of City Hall and City staff. In fact, under the “leadership” of CM Ullery, employees were forbidden to talk with Councilmembers unless they were approached directly, and if they had any discussions with a Councilmember, they had to report, in writing, to their supervisor, detailing what was discussed.
Your statement that the Mayor directed the City Manager to tell senior staff to not put raises in the budget goes against the facts as to how the budget is prepared. The M&C do not create the budget, that is done by the City Manager...it is one of the key functions of the position. The CM and Finance Director present a proposed budget to the M&C, and refinements are made before a final budget is approved. If senior directors were told to not put raises in, then they were told by the City Manager. That is not to say that the M&C can't direct the CM to give, or not give, raises in any given budget fiscal year, but it is done in open session, during Council meetings.
You are not alone in thinking it obscene to spend $75K for a slogan, or $500K for a Pike plan, or $50K for making Rockville a cultural destination. Most residents agreed with you, but the three amigos on the Council didn't care what we wanted. At least one councilmember did ask to go out to students, and the public in general, asking for ideas on a slogan and logo. The idea was rejected by City staff, who thought if they didn't pay for it, it had no value.
Yes, there were letters written to the Mayor and Council at least two years ago, by former employees who felt they were mistreated by staff. The manner in which these things are handled is, the Mayor sends them to the City Manager to be handled, and he is responsible for carrying out investigations. Hard as it might be to accept and understand, it is not within the authority of the M&C to handle these things. Imagine the frustration of our elected officials knowing these things are being stonewalled, and not being able to do anything about it. There is a story that quotes the CM's response to the letters, but this is a family newspaper.

Posted By: Jose in Twinbrook On: 5/9/2012

Title: Unreal

This is an absolute joke. The Mayor and Council is trying to make this issue disappear. Surveys? Really? None of us believe anything will come of this.
Bring in the State, investigate, show results and lets see what happens. If this Mayor and Council do nothing, they will be in office for exactly one more year. If they decide to take charge and actually lead, good things will happen, there will trust within the staff and pride will resurface. Kimball needs to move on, Vargas needs to be FIRED, Burt Hall needs to retire, Swift needs to go back to school and I am sure there is more. Stop sitting on your hands and do something before we lose our City. Where I am from, there would be riots and pitchforks, that is why I am here. America can handle the truth and deal with it, can Rockville?

Posted By: Capt tug Toot toot On: 5/9/2012

Title: Salvage rights

Our sad story continues yet another week. continued....
Well the USS Rockville hit the sharp jagged shore of Rockville. Capt Ullery had jumped ship back in December, and left ole Gilligan at the helm. Gilligan could not steer the USS Rockville so she continued full speed ahead and has now cracked up on the rocks of Rockville.
After the mayday distress call the Sentinel rescue crew was dispatched to provide assistance to those crew still left alive.
Now under the command of first mate Gilligan along with the help of Mary Ann the salvage company Saul Ewing LLP. has been contracted to see if the ole scow can be righted once again or cut up for scrap.
Now where is the skipper today? He is enjoying some Capt Morgan sitting back counting the cash he got from the Thurston Howell III city retirement fund while the crew are still floundering in rough seas. Many jumped ship before the rocky collision and others are hanging onto ragged life preservers.
Stay tuned ye land lubbers for the story can only get better from here.


Posted By: Charles Baker On: 5/9/2012

Title: Rich Hajewski

Rich,
Not sure if you are following these articles, but I wish to thank you sir for all the hard work assisting the staff and expecially myself during your 17 years with the city.
Your opnions and guidance was much appreciated by countless employees and expecially myself.
Your statement about ethics does not surprise me at all. I found your ethics beyond reproach.
It was a true honor to work with you for 17 years.
Hope you are enjoying retirement!
Charles Baker

Posted By: Stephanie Wood On: 5/9/2012

Title: Best wishes city staff

To all city of Rockville employees,
As a city resident I have been following the articles in the Sentinel and the reports are simply despicable. No public employee deserves to be treated with such disrespect.
Please try to hold your head high and hang in there. There is no way the city would have to audacity to retain those managers mentioned in the articles. Hope the mayor and council are listening. Are you?
Please accept my heart felt apology to each of you for having to endure the unethical and horrific abuses while serving us citizens at the hands of ruthless tyrannical managers.
I strongly suggest that the city start the long healing process, and never allow this to happen again.
Good luck to any new city manager faced with cleaning up years of abuses. You will sure need it given the level of problems left in the wake of the departed city manager.

Posted By: It's me a Rockville staff person. On: 5/8/2012

Title: Attention Will and other rockville staff

So funny you mention the training from HR. I sat in one of the same trainings and we had to hear all about the sexual harassment of this employee at the county. I found the so called training more of a whine and complain training than anything else.
Now to mention once again our favorite part time staff person. How many trainings have you been to within the past year which are conducted by this person? I cannot remember any. Someone really needs to look into this persons activities.
You have to see this video of our part time staff person talking on YouTube. This is so darn funny.
Part time staff talks about ICMA `book used by city:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCVZFPTYI2c
This is so funny we order the books by the box and use it in our supervisor training.
The directors have not read this book. Ah here is the key many supervisors use the book to learn how to deal with problem employees. Oh you can bet some have licked the ink off those pages.
Tip do not eat one hour before watching this little ditty!!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQp5i1-tXTw
HR yeah right! Not even sure where to begin with that department. One thing is for sure and that is never trust anyone in HR. Carlos appears to be the main pipeline to the CM's office. I know for a fact that employees have complained to HR during their exit interviews and nothing has happened. The same issues now being aired on this blog and by the Sentinel were told to HR. I also know that Scott was told by at least one employee how bad it was in Public Works and he did nothing.
I know people in Recs and Parks who were fired or just left.
We all know how Rockville deals with issues and that management could care less about us staff.
Why did it take several former staff to blow the lid off this mess? Because nobody in city hall gave a hoot about us employees.
The abuses have been allowed to run wild soon as Ullery came on board and Rich retired.
How many good employees have been lost? I really want somone to tell the newspaper.

Posted By: John Thompson Sr. On: 5/8/2012

Title: OH BOY

I bet the managers are going to be dancing in city hall tomorrow. After all the hype about an expanded investigation what happened?
It took the city 5 weeks to come up with the final game plan for the employees to shut up and go away. Simply brilliant and well thought out by the acting city manager.
Who would have dreamed that we would end up where we have. All the talk about getting to the bottom of what is going on in city hall and selecting an investigator to hear we have a fning fill in the blank investigation.
Can you imagine if the police operated this way. This is not a true investigation what so ever. What we have hear is nothing more than a cover up to move from underneath the black cloud that has followed the city since Ms Evans departed last year.
After all Ms. Kimball is jst too busy to take time to discuss the story with the paper she has a city to run into the ground.
I would be real surprised to find out that my opnion is not shared by others. The Mayor and Council have really failed the citizens this time. What is even worse is the failure to protect the cities workers.
I guess it is time for the Mayor and Council to get pissy with anyone who dares to offer the same opnion as mine. Surveys are like polls they can be twisted to get the results desired.
Thank goodness I do not work for the city. Many of us were hoping for real change in Rockville but we end up with more of the same.
I wonder what article will fill the columns of the Sentinel this Thursday?
Ms. Summerour was so correct in her comments to the Mayor and Council the state needs to investigate Rockville.
It is high time to start calling our state officials and demanding that Rockville be investigated.

Posted By: Loyal Reader On: 5/8/2012

Title: To The Sentinel

Suggest posting all the previous articles related to Rockville employees under “Most Popular” at the bottom right of your front page where the first three articles are posted. Your readers may not realize the previous articles are still accessible and that people are still posting on some of them.
Keep up the good work. Thank you.

Posted By: Leaving soon On: 5/8/2012

Title: Current staff

ROCKVILLE - "Current city employees, skeptical of a process to investigate managers in the wake of recent harassment"....... are still skeptical Madam Mayor.
So we cannot speak face to face with the investigator? Many people can communicate face to face better than they can write. Many people have poor handwriting skills.
Save the tax payers $$$ and just let Carlos conduct the investigation. The end result will be the same.
I have completely lost my faith in the Mayor and Council. I smell more cover up.

Posted By: Very Sad Resident On: 5/8/2012

Title: What?

The survey says's
Not guilty!
As many have said Rockville is great in the art of the cover up. Once again Rockville lives true to the reputation.

Posted By: Stephan O'Donnell On: 5/7/2012

Title: Cover it up rockville

What a joke the city has become. The city is wasting our money to have a outside investigator mail out surveys.
Will the surveys be sent USPS bulk mail or first class?
All existing city staff should speak to a legal council if the city wants you to sign any statement. Adding your name could give the city the ammo they need to fire each of you.
This could be nothing more than the city gathering informatiion from each of you to see what kind of potential legal issues they are facing.
Be very careful!

Posted By: Mike M. Resident of King Farm On: 5/7/2012

Title: The Rockville Dog and Pony Show.

I blinked and almost missed the mayors statement about the big investigation.
A survey OMG. A whole 1 minute statement from our wonderful Mayor, and then she is off to the feel good business at hand.
A survey investigation limited in scope to existing staff!! This what we have waited to hear after 5 weeks. So management gets away with what they did to the former employees.
I hope an existing employee releases this survey to the Sentinel.
I'm speechless. A real dad day for justice in Rockville.
Saddened to admit I reside in Tree City USA.
Mike

Posted By: See ya in court On: 5/7/2012

Title: The Investigation. Cover up!

I am a former Rockville employee who could not take the negative culture in the city. I retired early and took a huge hit in my retirement. I must now work just to break even.
I feel sick after hearing the Mayors announcement about the outside investigator.
Without the brave former employees this would have never come to the attention of the Sentinel or the public.
From what I see this was a clear vindictive punishment by not including the former employees in the survey.
I am so damn upset at the Mayor and Council for playing us like fools. Must feel real good to punish the former staff for having the audacity to speak up against a corrupt system.
Yet another cover up by the All American City.

Posted By: Response from John Q. On: 5/7/2012

Title: To: Rockville Resident

In reading your response to previous blog, a few things stood out to me. You had stated that you consider yourself pretty well plugged into what goes on in The Ciy Of Rockville.
I undestand that the M&C oversees the legislation. Sir or Madam, Exactly, what do you think all this is? If this is not a legislative matter, I dont know what is. You doubt the Mayor knew about this? Have you not been following this story? How many more city employees need to come forward and say that they have written the M&C personally.
It is incorrect of you to say that the M&C have no say in hiring or training. The M&C have approved the hire of a significant number of new very highly paid
positions - so, yes they certainly do have a say.
As for the previous investigation, let me say say that it in fact did take place. Employees were selected randomly and some volunteered to meet with the investigator for iterviews. I believe the invesigator's name was M. Johnson. These interviews took place at the Civic Center Mansion over the course of several days during regular work hours. This investigation was conducted due to previous claims of harrasment. Carlos Vargas and Michelle Poche made the arrangements.
I also know that it may have been difficult for employees to recieve a raise during a challenging economic time. However, what you do not know is that your Mayor told the City Manager to inform senior staff not to include increments in thier budgets.
What an insult, no increments for employees, increase in rates for taxpayers. I have an idea for the M&C, why not have the local schools develope a slogan or design artwork, am i the only one who sees something wrong with spending this obscene ammount of money this way?
In closing sir or madam, I am very sorry there seems to be a chinese wall between the M&C and senior staff. I am even more sorry that she has been too inept to see that wall being built before it reached crisis mode. Perhaps the taxpayers should take notes.

Posted By: Beat down staff. On: 5/7/2012

Title: Slow coach. Please read.

Yes not everyone at the city is a bad manager some are actually real good people. The problem is the real bad managers are at the very top in positions like chiefs or directors.
Scott hired a vast number of the current directors and these people still follow the same culture and management style of Scott. Nothing has changed since Scott departed in December.
Senior staff sits in their isolatioan chamber Tuesday mornings and think of ways to reduce the budget and discuss the articles in the paper. You can bet the city manager brief book is full of the Sentinel articles.
I wonder if the brief book can be obtained by the Sentinel paper as a FOIA request?
Yes some of the real bad apples are thrown out in the trash, but the key here is that management styles start at the top and filter down to us minions.
I went through LEED training and know for a fact that this form of management is not supported by all of the managers. Many still manage from the top down.
Please understand that for many of us life in city hall is a daily hell and have to fear of loosing our jobs if the city needs a new scapegoat.
Yes the city does a great job at hiding the total compensation of the senior staff form the public, and even the Mayor and Council. Funny in some cases it is hidden right in front of the M&C by combining different staffing cost centers.
I have just about ruined my home life due to the constant stress. Hopefully we see the light at the end of a very dark tunnel.
Please see that justice is done in Rockville before it is too late.

Posted By: Sad staff person. On: 5/7/2012

Title: Don't make me cry anymore

As a employee many of us feel slapped once again. Jenny is defining the scope of the investigation. Seriously now Jenny? She was hand picked by Scott for a good reason.
Anyone who thinks Jenny has not been getting instructions from Scott needs to purchase Texas from Mexico.
It makes me sick to see one of the primary abusers roaming city hall acting nice trying to convince everyone that the person is really not bad.
This entire debacle nothing more another slap in the face to the good employees here at the city. People do not change overnight unless they have something to hide.
This investigation will be nothing more than a cover up to protect and clear upper management, and at what cost to the tax payers?
Do not be fooled and think anyone will be fired except maybe some middle managers at best. Chances are the managers and all staff will be sent off to indoctrination class to learn the" Rockville Way" instructed by U know who.

Yes comrade, it is the Rockville Way or the highway!
I smell even more training headed down the part.
Remember!!! You are lucky to have a job! And don't U forget it comrade!!!

Posted By: Good employee On: 5/7/2012

Title: Poor leadership

I have only worked for the City for a few years. In that time I have seen some improvements but there is still a long way to go. Most of the improvements have been to the structure allowing for more supervisors and for those supervisors to get an increase in salary. While the rest of the staff get no increases or upward mobility. Except for the few with connections who will be re categorized to a II or III position . The atmosphere is not healthy and staff are disgruntled and generally unhappy. There are more supervisors but still no leadership. I like many will leave the first chance I get even if there is a pay cut involved. Wake up Mayor you are out of touch and lack the control to right the ship.

Posted By: Employee who is fearful of management. On: 5/7/2012

Title: Trust?

Just to let the Mayor and Council understand there is one of the council member that many of us do not trust.
Sorry Councilmember Pierzchala,
Sir with all due respect even though you appear to be behind the staff on most issues, we have no faith that information provided to the investigators will not be transmitted to the senior staff mentioned in the Sentinel articles.
Why you may ask? Many of us staff watched Mr. Ullery being defended by Pitor and John and yourself when the Mayor Marcuccio and Councilmember Newton tried to not renew Scotts contract. We know who is on your buddy list.
On a personal level you do seem to be a nice person, but please understand that we staff are really suspect and have a hard time trusting anyone due to the years of being beat down.
How can you convince us that we will be protected?
Also just to let the readers understand the mentality of some in city hall is to outlast the articles in the paper. When each of you posters and the Sentinel goes away to bigger and better things, the abuse will continue. Why do you think the attitude has been not to make comments?

Posted By: Will On: 5/7/2012

Title: Experience

As someone who used to work as a Supervisor for the City, this will go nowhere. The City is so adept at stringing things along, cleaning things up and then letting them go away. It happened two years ago when we all took a "training" to become better managers. All that training did was teach us on how to better deal with disgruntled employees. There is a female in HR who does trainings who is an absolute joke, all she did was talk about her personal issues and then tried to thread them into current events within the City. I made sure I scheduled my exit interview and talked about some of the exact same stuff that is happening now over 1 year ago. The HR department has fallen apart, the City Manager's office is a disgrace, Rec and Parks is full of lies and inaccurate information put out to keep people in their jobs and Finance is INCOMPETENT. I am scared for my friends who still work there, I hope they can either get things fixed or can get out. The Mayor is just as guilty for the low morale as she and other members of the council constantly talk down to employees. Rockville was an All American City, now, it's can't even make All County.

Posted By: BTDT On: 5/7/2012

Title: Former Vic

Until that Confederate statue is removed from within the city boundaries, its business as usual in city hall. The Good 'Ol Boys rule and nothing will change. Personal experience left me deeply scared.

Posted By: Pete On: 5/7/2012

Title: Global warming

Fellow citizens and readers, with all the hot air being passed in city hall, I have found the source of global warming.
Let's get real and cut through the BS.
Every week and day we residents sit here and read more and more horrific comments from the staff in city hall about abuses and cover ups. Yet what has happened? Now we have another investigation by the city to look into some of the same managers investigated the last round. No wonder many see nothing but a cover up.
It is very clear to this resident that the city has been extremely effective keeping staff issues away from the Mayor and Council. I suggest the Mayor and Council were told by the former city manager that they have nothing to do with staff issues. So why would we expect that he informed the M&C about the investigation?
I would not expect any resident or a majority of the staff to have any knowledge of the alleged investigation from over 2 years ago.
This coupled with the fact that city hall has been quite effective at keeping the stories out of the paper & off the Internet. It now appears now the issues are far greater than most of us understood.
As part of the new investigation we must insist that the Mayor and Council look into the comment by John Q and if found true several staff must be fired immediately. To hear that the findings were valid and all that happened is more training is just a joke at best.
There is no doubt that there are good managers in the city, but these problems underscore the huge mess left by poor management and no enforcement of the existing rules and regulations.
It will be a very sad day to find out that the managers mentioned in this series of articles are still employed after the investigation.
The city is nothing but the joke of Maryland!

Posted By: My favorite Martian On: 5/7/2012

Title: WHAT?

Tell me that this is not the second investigation in 2.5 years like John Q has indicated???? This is not acceptible what so ever. If the city did nothing after the first investigation and the same people are mentioned then why in the hell are we spending even more money?
Clearly the training is worthless and what we need is a whole new group of managers.
Enough with the political posturing and end the madness right now for Gods sake while you still have staff.
We need to find out the facts behind the cover up from 2.5 years ago. Transparent government....... Yeah and I have the space shuttle in my garage along with 3 guys from Mars!

Posted By: Marcus AKA Moose On: 5/7/2012

Title: Only one comment?

Well guess this will be comment 2.
I have been following this whole mess since last year. I must admit that something smells like the rotten dumpster at a local seafoood market in the middle of summer.
What we have here is no leadership. The top levels of the city are lacking the courage and leadership necessary to do the right thing required to turn the city around and fire the abusers.
Take the broom and sweep city hall clean of the dirt right now!

Posted By: Scott On: 5/7/2012

Title:

Let us cut to the chase and not mince words beating around the bush.
Fire the whole rotten bunch of scum.
There u have it in plain and simple terms.

Posted By: Employee On: 5/7/2012

Title: M&C - Clean Your House

A thorough housecleaning at City Hall is long overdue. The stench is unbearable and disgusting. Throw the trash and garbage out the door. Start with the top layer and keep cleaning and disinfecting until your employees can breathe again, and you will cure the disease infecting your loyal employees.
Do not sweep this under the carpet. Your employees and residents deserve better. What you see is made to look like a pretty picture during your presence. You are not seeing the ugly picture, or are you and prefer to ignore it?
What will this secret investigation to clear management staff cost the employees and the residents? How will you pay for it? Is this investigation a tool to save face and the end result has already been decided?
Sorry employees, no COLAs or increments. We are reducing your wages. You’re lucky to have a job.
Sorry residents, we are raising taxes. No budget money to pay for the costly investigation to clear our efficient management staff.
How sweet your budget will smell if you eliminate those high-dollar salaries being paid to the masters who are managing your slaves.
Clean your house and keep it clean.

Posted By: SlowCoach On: 5/6/2012

Title:

Spent a lot of time working for Rockville; I've seen worse management in local gov't, and I've seen better. Rockville is in the middle of the pack, but probably should be higher, given their resources and the access to the national talent pool their money gives them.
One the plus side, they pick uo the trash, take care of the parks, police effectivley, pump clean water, and plow the snow pretty well.
On the negative side, they don't any of the above very efficiently - it's a very expensive organization to run, and the employee population growth has far exceeded that of the citizenry.
More on the plus - there is no embedded, pervasive culture of corruption. No "pay-to-play", kickbacks, election fraud, or financial misaapropriation. Doesn't mean individual bad actors haven't done wrong, but such behavior isn't tolerated. Covered up, maybe, or not prosecuted, maybe, but crooks are always shown the door.
On the other hand, they've never had a problem playing fast and loose with prodcurement rules for convenience (Town Center) and sheenigans in pay and personnel actions are routine and common. Lot's of mystery hires of buddies from previous jobs, and strange, non-competetive promotions. The Personnel arena teated HIPPA as a suggstion instead of law, and some very personal information often made it's way into common knowlege at Rockville. And no one EVER really knew what ANYTHING actually cost, such as the Mansion, pool, or the golf course, as so much of the operational expenses were hidden or paid out of other budget lines.
Going back to the positive, they bent over backwards to hire and promote women and minorities, and worked hard at outreach to those groups. And it wasn't just political correctness; the effort was sincere.
The dark side of that was they never hesitated to throw a white male employee under the bus, and the civil service commission once spanked them pretty well for bungling some terminations from that group.
On the plus side again, management: uhhhh...Rockville falls down a bit in this area. many of the middle and upper level managers have been there a long time, and some of thoses folks are "eccentric", at best. An employee unfortunate enough to be under one those managers can suffer a long, miserable, nasty career. Many of the good employess caught in that situation leave, or transfer, when possible. Some lower and middle managers have an astounding record of employee turnover, to which Personnel and senior managment are indiffrent.
Rockville pays well, and the previous post mentioned $130K for senior staff - I very much doubt any of the senior staff are working for so little - and considering the metro area, their actual pay isn't out of line. Granted, they do a good job of concealing their total annual cash compensation from the press, where the reported amounts are usually 10 - 15% or more lower than the true payouts. And the number of people on the senior staff pay scale has jumped, big time.
But rank-and-file employees are paid OK, and they have a generous defined benefit retirement plan, with low employee contributions. The total benfits packge is about middle of the pack for local gov't in this area, which is just where they want to be.
Most folks work 7.5 hours and go home - and there is nothing wrong with that, but non-management employees aren't being worked to death, either, unless they're caught underneath one of the more "unique" managers. The work ethic at Rockville varies from quite good to wrteched, across departments and sub-groups. Many employees retire with huge sick leave balances; some of 'em leave after decades, with zero sick leave on the books, and for no real long-term or dramatic health issues. And management seems indiffrent to that, as well.
Rockville came close, a few times, to a solid management team, in elected officials and senior staff, but never quite got to the critical mass necessary to do real transformation. One or two good ones would quit, or not run for office again, and the org would back-slide into mediocrity. Some M&C and senior staff combinations were aboslute oil and water. . .
Probaly it's fair to characterize Rockville as honest, well intentioned, inefficient, risk adverse, fairly competent, and sincere. They're not too good at accountability, at all levels, and institutionally incapable of self-examiniation. The next time they do an honest lessons learned or after-action review will be the first time. The organization as a whole isn't racist or sexist, though certainly some individuals may be; I doubt the stats for pay, hiring, or promotion will show any pattern of discrimination, except perhaps in age.
On the other hand, I have no doubt the behaviour of some of the managers meets the test of creating a hostile work place - just not hostile based on the employee's protected status - likely hostile to EVERYONE working for the manager.
With some light shown on the warts, and some turn-over and/or retirements, they could have a shot at moving to a higher level.

Posted By: Rockville Resident On: 5/6/2012

Title: To: John Q

As a City employee, you should know that a "Chinese Wall" exists between the Office of the Mayor and Council and the City Manager and all City employees. The M&C deal with legislation, the City Manager and his staff are responsible for the day-to-day operations that keep the City functional. The M&C have no say in the hiring, firing, training, supervision, evaluations, etc., of any City employee. The M&C do hire the City Manager, and he or she serves at their pleasure. It takes a majority vote to fire him.
If there was an investigation 2 years ago, it is the first we are hearing of it, and I doubt the M&C knew about it. If it was public knowledge, you could bet the press would have covered the story...at least The Sentinel would have. I don't recall anything substantive, although there were always the rumors of things going on.
As for raises, the Mayor and other councilmembers spoke out against them several years ago, at a time when people were losing jobs, other sectors were not getting raises or COLA's, and the economy was sinking. However, she and others did rail against the bonuses for senior staff, the car allowances, etc, all of which were passed anyway. Take a look at what councilmembers defended granting those benefits to the very managers that are under fire from City employees.
The Mayor spoke against and voted against the slogan and branding fiasco. It was a part of her campaign in 2009. One councilmember who voted for it is still on the council, and still defending staff as though they can do no wrong. If you are going to be critical of the M&C, and it is your right to be critical, at least go after the right people.
From what has been covered in this paper, it appears the Mayor is taking action and has promised a full, independent investigation. She has promised to protect the privacy of anyone who steps forward, and I for one have every confidence that she, along with other councilmembers who have been quoted, will do the right thing.

Posted By: Scared inmate On: 5/6/2012

Title: 8 hour lockdown

I live in constant fear of loosing my position in the city. I have seen the city fire or drive off people who had been with the city for years. Many lives have been destroyed, by the ruthless guards, former warden and the acting warden (asst city manager)
The guards (supervisors) want more and more from us. We have to do more work with less, while the guards sit back playing on the internet, run their kids after school programs or chat away on the phone with friends, saunter in and out of city hall like they have no worries,take long lunches, blame staff for mistakes and the list goes on and on.
On the surface what someone on the outside would see is a professional org, but the inside operations are far from professional. There is talk about the HPO, but it is a facade!
This is what HPO should be about:" An HPO is an organization that concentrates on bringing out the best in people. An organization that positions itself to emerge as an HPO designs itself to produce sustainable results. The organization should meet specific qualities typically attributed to being high performing in order to fit this model"
Tell me why are the inmates treated like dirt? Why is there no praise? Why do we keep seeing the same minions getting awards?
What many of us hear is we are lucky to have a job! You can bet that the guards and acting warden are planning their next move against the remaining inmates. They will wait till the pressure is off and try to find out who dared post comments making them look bad. Then we will be history!
Acting warden Kimball is behind the guards supporting all actions. If they all stick together they can/will ride out the storm. Unity is the key here, and making the staff look like liars. We all were sent an email from acting warden Kimball which attempted to justified the way some guards forced changes on peoples evaluations. This is typical here in the city.
Your attempt to deflect the situation failed warden! Could that been a warning shot over the bow?
This email was sent while the mayor is calling for an investigation. What nerve warden!
Vargas will do what ever the warden tells him to do.
How many times has your job been threatned Vargas? How many times have you threatned your correctional officers in HR to get with the program?
How can the inmates all know about the abuses in city hall and yet the acting warden and her PIO claim they take every complaint seriously? Let's get real!!! Keep on telling yourself the same story long enough and you start to think it must be true.
Warden look the citizens in the eye and tell them that you had no idea this was going on!
Yes, I had to add some levity in my comment to keep from crying or having a breakdown.
Sorry Mayor but we have no faith remaining in the system.

Posted By: Staff X On: 5/6/2012

Title: Employee sounds off

Has anyone else but me noticed how some of the senior staff are acting? Hi how are you doing? Call Hollywood we have some real actors here in city hall
.
Some of us were talking and the managers have circled the wagons and are trying to win over the hearts and minds of staff.
Do not fall for the nice guy routine. just because they are nice today you can bet the same old go for the throat mentality is still there.
Any of you staff who think these people have your back watch out and do not trust them. You could be next!
I have heard that one director thinks that she cannot be touched. Wonder who that is? Everyone has noticed.
City hall is a small place and many are talking to each other about how the directors are acting.
Some see a possible end to the torture, but I see nothing happening.
Sorry Jenny we do not trust anything you say! Guess you are working to see we staff have more training on how to suck up tp management. So much for all that LEED & HPO BS!
Speaking of which, we need a new supervisor manual in the toilet room. Better yet can we switch to the Policy and Proceedure Manual? We can start off with the copy that Carlos has in his office since he does not follow it. I have first dibbs on the page about harassment.
Just wait citizens Rockville will end up discrediting all the whistle blowers and selling each of them down the river. They have the lies mastered and have been damn good at hiding the dirt.
The real loosers are you the citizens. You are paying for these managers to lessen productvity and services. Countless hours of time wasted just to serve the director.
I really feel sorry for each of you taxpayers. You deserve much better! The only way to see thaat change happens is to bring in new directors start over.
I have nothing against Mike in IT or Terry, but the rest of them are constantly under discussion and not in a good way. Many staff suck up to Burt, but think he is a real A*$ . Do not get on Burt's bad side.
You citizens paid $75,000 for the Rockville branding. So Get Into It Rockville and lets get back to serving the citizens. i think they would agree.
Sorry if this was a bit long. I have been holding back for sometime now.

Posted By: Disgusted in Rockville On: 5/4/2012

Title: SOLIDARITY FOREVER

I hesitate to use SOLIDARITY FOREVER. Either the city employees don't have a union, or if they do have one it is horribly ineffective. I would like to encourage all of the city employees to support each other, find a place where you can come together to keep each other up to date on what is going on at City Hall, and continue to take notes. John Q's comments are very interesting. We will all have to wait and see if this "investigation"
discloses who knew what and when they knew it. When Mayor Marcuccio and Councilmember Newton obviously wanted Ullery fired both of them must have been clueless as to how to get it done. When Marcuccio was elected for a second term Ullery decided not to push his luck, so he retired. If Marcuccio, Newton and Pierzchala had knowledge of these allegations, and did nothing, they should all be ousted from the council. One need only to think about Marcuccio's remarks concerning the hiring of the new city clerk when she said Barber was "at the top of our list" but instead of hiring him in 2010, "the group chose to experiment with the possibilities Ms. Evans would bring" I wonder if Glenda Evans would have ever accepted the city clerk job if she knew she was being employed as an experiment. Rockville has never looked worse--we are the laughing stock of municipal governments.

Posted By: mark again On: 5/4/2012

Title: Play it again Sam.

I agree with the poster John Q the art in public places sucks!
Does everyone remember the huge watermellon that sat at Wooton Parkway and Falls Road? Where did it go to? How about the Rockville symbol you can only see from space on Maryland Ave in Monumnet Park. The tree limb perched on a rock at the path entrance off the Gude Dr bridge that goes to the Senior Center. And my all time favorite the ugly plywood orange moniliths in the field next to the swim center.
Take a hint and improve the lighting at the swin center so my wife does not fear going to her car in the evening. One light in the parking lot is defective and goes on and off.
Maybe the police could also make a showing in the evening to protect the citizens.
John Q the Mayor is not going to say she is sorry because you can bet the city attorney has advised her to keep her mouth closed. Saying she is sorry or mentioning past investigations opens the doors for more lawsuits.
The Mayor and Council have lost all of their power and are forced to take a back seat while high paid morons run the city into the dirt. Must really suck knowing you have almost no power left and are just figure heads.
Mayor you need to call for reform and see that it happpens immediatley. Jenifer Kimball needs to step down and the Mayor and Council must appoint someone who will fire the abusers.
If John Q is correct, you have the evidence to have these people fired. How many stinking times can the same people be allowed to get away with abusing staff?
I demand an answer!
No wonder people have lost faith in the City of Rockville. The managers all know you can get get away with anything.
Put the new slogan to work and GET INTO IT! or we will go into the polls in mass and see that a new council is running Rockville.
I also want to know why in the hell nothing was done when the first letter was sent from a city employee to the Mayor and Council over a year ago. Again, I demand you answer this simple question.
The Sentinel ran the first article just after Ms. Evans left the city. Then several staff complained to the Sentinel who published the article on March 29 and every week since then we continue to read more and more abuses. One of the staff was the original person who complained over a year ago. We read horrid comments from a 26 year senior level veteran employee and another who suffered health issues and was subject to harassement and racial comments. Yet nothing was done even though all these people were in the same department. Talk about a smoking gun. Heck talk about a lawsuit. Sorry staff you are all a bunch of liars! BS.... I suggest looking elsewhere like who has the largest office. Hint hint.
See why we have no faith in this investigation? Many of us see this as nothing but the city attempting to futher tarnish the employees who complained and put a spin on the investigation to limit legal liability.
I bet you that Ullery passed off the original letter as a employee who had an ax to grind about Swift. I can just hear him bashing the staff person who had the gall to send in the letter.
Tell us the truth!
Sorry I was so long winded, I needed to vent after reading 5 weeks of negative articles.

Posted By: after I leave On: 5/4/2012

Title: Same ole sorry tune

Sorry Mayor we have heard this all before. Morale is still terrible.
There is not many old timers left in city hall. Have anyone taken notice? Does anyone really care?
Jenny is not outgoing and hardly smiles. Many of us say she just looks ready to bite our heads off. Great example to set as a morale booster.
Better get MPF on the phone so she can find some material off the internet to send out to the staff. Just makes sure she removes the company name City on the Hill from the material since we would not want any conflicts of intrest in city hall :D
Oh crud! The email will have to wait till Monday since she is off on Fridays. Better yet Jenny, why not have MPF custom tailor a mandatory training program called How to Serve Your Supervisor. Hints and tips on how to suck up.
The fun never ends we have to suffer through finding out that Senior staff grants themselfs a huge bonus and all we get is further behind with no or little raises. What a great example this sets. Then we have meetings where the senior staff tells us we just have to suffer cause the money is tight.
Hey guess we should be glad to have a job. Right Jenny?
A large number of my friends have been forced out. I had a coworker talking to me last week saying she could not take the pressure much longer and was crying.
I really hate going to work now not knowing when the phone will ring or one of the supervisors will tear into me for something that was not my fault. Guess the city will loose another long term employee.
Many of us over the years have heard Mr. Hall yelling and seen him stomping through city hall. Many employees are afraid of this guy and just steer clear.
We think Cohen has a temper also. The guy never smiles and we joke he looks at us as staff costing the city money since we are older. Cohen thinking : Ah..... another long time employee $$$$, we can fire him and get a warm body that will cost us much less and save the city money. Yippie yea!!! I smell another fat bonus..Honey we going to clean up and retire like Scott in a couple of years.
Best yet is that Vargas will make us work for free. Yes citizens for free! The city has a 37.5 hour work week and if we work past the 37.5 we work for free until 40 hours then many of us get comp time. Many have so many hours of comp time that we cannot even use it. The other lower grade staff can get overtime pay only after 40 hours per week, but still must work 2.5 hours for free and get time and a half after that. Supervisors try to get staff to settle for comp rather that overtime. Some have been told they have to take comp since there is no overtime left in the budget.
The worst example of comp time abuse was Chris B who had hundreds of hours of worthless comp he could never use since he was never allowed off. He bailed out leaving his comp from what I was told.
Susan Swift is not well liked at all. The poor staff in CPDS look like zombies. Guess many of us are lucky we do not have her as a boss. Rumor is she treats Jim and other managers like dirt and the staff are afraid to make decisions. Heck remember Ed? Many people indicated she worked him over just like Charlie. I guess Ed just wanted to leave and go sit on the Housing board. Did you go to his the retirement party? He looked like a different person.
Soon as the pressure is off it will get even worse for all of us. So enjoy while you can.

Posted By: B.Mulligan On: 5/4/2012

Title: Balance

Former City employee here, with experience consulting in state & local gov't elsewhere. Rockville isn't particularly badly managed, or particularly well managed, as local gov't goes. They should do better, given their resources and access to the talent pool those bucks provide. Accountabilty was always weak at Rockville, at all levels; performance, good or bad, wasn't much of factor in personnel management. On the plus side, there was no culturally embedded atmosphere for true corruption, no 'pay to play', or kickbacks, at least not as a routine or tolerated situasions.Would they cut a corner on procurement? Sure thing! But usually for convenience, as opposed to malfeasance. And there were occasions when a manager would hire and very rapidly promote a crony from a previous job, or a favored worker would accelerate from clerk to senior management overnight.
Rockville does the basics well enough; they pick up the trash, police effectively, do a decent job when it snows. Do they do it efficiently? Not very, even by the loose standards of local gov't. It's a very expensive organization to run, and the employee count has grown much faster than the population.
Quite a few managers and employees have been there a long time, probably too long, in some cases. Some mid and senior level managers are truly ghastly, just awful to work for. And the better employees either transferred or moved on from those situations. Rich may have been too nice when he said 'hard working employees', as most/many show up, do their 7.5 hours, and call it a day. Nothing wrong with that, but not what most private sector mid-level workers would call 'hard' work. They do what is required, sometimes a bit more, sometimes a bit less.
Rockville came close, once or twice, to putting together a solid team of senior managers, but never quite pulled it off; one or two would quit, and the organization would slide back into mediocrity. Same with elected officials - always just one or two (OK, sometimes 3 or 4) short of an effective, well versed group.
Rockville pays well enough, and senior staff have always avoided having their total annual cash compensation reported - but they shouldn't be embarrased to let it be known, as it isn't out of line with the metro area. I doubt very much any department head is working for as little as $130K, as the previous poster estimated. Rank and file have a generous defined benefit retirement, as well.

Posted By: Beat Down Staff On: 5/4/2012

Title: Teflon dictators

As a city staffer let me tell everyone that from what we see the directors(dictators) and other staff think they cannot be touched. It is still business as usual in Rockville.
Some managers stroll into city hall when they damn feel like arriving. I often wonder if they are using leave. The rumor is there is some that do not get charged leave because they have to attend late meetings. Can someone please show me the section in the HR rules where this is allowed. Directors are not eligible to receive comp time.
My coworkers agree that nothing will come from this investigation except more training and emails from the 4 day a week Ullery appointed employee.
You have to understand this citizens the senior staff are the most valuable asset the city has. Without them micro managing and cracking the whip us deadbeats would be completely worthless.
Carlos is worthless and his staff must follow his demands or they can hit the road like the others in HR.
Nothing changed after Scott left. His dictators are still sucking the life blood from city hall and the remaining employees.
The only career option in the city is stroke out, quit, kiss the rear, violate the rules, retire or get fired.
I am choosing to get out while I can. The day to day stress is taking a toll on me.
I have no faith that things will change.

Posted By: Rockville Resident On: 5/3/2012

Title: In defence of the Mayor

Mr. Q, I think you are coming at this with misinformation. First of all, if there was an issue and investigation 2 1/2 years ago, it is the first I am hearing of it, and I consider myself pretty much plugged into what is going on in our City. If you understand how the City is structured, you would know there is the proverbial "Chinese wall" between the Mayor/Council and City administration. Other than the City Manager, the M&C have no say in who gets hired or fired. What makes you think the Mayor knew intimate details of what was going on in City Hall with respect to staff? Even if she did know some things, there was nothing the M&C could do openly if the City Manager wasn't willing to cooperate.
The Mayor was one of Ullery's biggest critics, and she took heat from the 3 amigos that sat on the council last term, as well as from the press and from citizens who thought they knew more than she did. She tried to get the bonuses quashed, to do away with the car allowances, to cut down on the size of the CM's office and staff. She voted against the logo and tagline, against some art projects and against running the City deeper in debt. As for pay raises, there was a time when no one was getting raises...Federal, State or County employees, not to mention residents who were losing jobs and seeing City services increase.
No one has fought harder to protect employees and do right by residents than Mayor Marcuccio. She has plenty of critics, and she isn't always right, but she is honest and forthright. I have every confidence she will take a leadership role in gettng to the bottom of this mess, and will do what she can to fix things. Again, remember, the M&C are elected to enact legislation, not run the City....there are strict limitations spelled out in the City Charter and Code. Give this council a chance to prove they are up to the task.

Posted By: John Q. On: 5/3/2012

Title: Get Into It!!!!

As a current city employee, I am personally offended that Mayor Marcuccio is choosing not to disclose (publicly) her past and present knowledge of the recent allegations brought forth by city employees.
The pending investigation from an outside firm will be the SECOND such investigation in approx. 2 1/2 years. The results from that invesigation. . . . City staff were required to undergo management training. That investigation yeilded the same concerns and reffered to the same managers that are being mentioned currently. Funny, I have not heard our fine Mayor disclose that to the press. . .or to the taxpayers who elected her in office.
The Mayor has shown her political face to the media, vowing to "find out just what in the world is going on". On paper, she [the mayor] is very concerned about all this. However, privately her viewpoint of staff is that their "spoiled" and "dont deserve a raise". These are comments that ciy employees are very aware of.
I am no politician, but I think if I were, I would be a little more focused on the employees and residents of the city than spending outrageous ammounts of money on tacky artwork, unnecessary high level positions, and repeated outside investigations that obviously do not solve anything. Oh and who can forget the 75,000 dollar slogan, and the 300,000 dollar kickback the city recieves from one of its health care providers. Not to mention the over paid senior level positions which the M&C approved to hire- most of those are above 130K. All the while telling low level staff that there is no money available for increments.
I have read comments from many city residents expressing their sorrow for Rockville employees, Ironic. . . . I feel sorry for them.
In closing, spare everyone the hero role Mayor. You owe every single employee and resident an apology.




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