We are hoping for another workshop before the next meeting because we need the residents of White Springs to voice their opinions about the financial dilemma White Springs is in. Please come to the meeting, if and when it is announced, tell your neighbors about the problem, bring them to the meetings and speak out about your concerns. White Springs is in a financial dilemma and if we do not do something about it and the council keeps ignoring all of your suggestions, we have a dilemma and we will need to start having recall petitions signed eliminating the councilors who do not care enough about White Springs. The council needs to listen to the people or else, we will be bankrupt. This is a serious matter. If these councilors don’t understand you, speak until they do. I frankly am so tired of fighting for what is right to not be listened to, as possibly is Mr. Brazil, Sr., so perhaps, just perhaps, the rest of you will have more success, if they hear it from you..
At the last workshop it was mainly what the Town can do to develop economically, not realizing we had financial problems. Ideas were given for raising some money, some of which have been tried before and have failed. Yes, Economic Development is important but first of all I ask each of you, who wants to move into a Town where we have less than two months cash flow; both our sewer and water systems are in bad shape and we will owe $700,000 at least to have the wastewater rehabilitation which is our share of the money involved in fixing our infrastructure; our roads are cracking and we have large potholes which have never been fixed properly; our sidewalks are cracking where there are sidewalks, (And for these latter items we received LOFT funds of $750,000 which were not used for transportation purposes) and soon it will require another increase in sewer and water rates and many of you cannot handle what you are paying now in your budget.
For the last four years all our town has done is spend, spend spend. We can blame some of the financial dilemma, on the two former Mayors, Rhett Bullard, esq and Spencer Lofton, neither of which understand a financial, if their life would depend upon it. But who was the CEO of the Town? Well that was Stacy Tebo.
We have a Manager/weak council form of government for a reason. In small towns, although the Council makes policy, it is at the advice of their Town Manager who supposedly has more of an education, training and experience as well. For years, all we have had as councilors are those with personalities or some affiliation with other councilors, until Helen Miller ran for office, initially. But even she has been sabotaged because the councilors either had no idea what was necessary nor the knowhow. It’s great, I supposed, to stroke your ego as a councilor, vice mayor or mayor but the question is…”What have you done for the Town”?
The Town Manager needs to provide an income and expense report at each meeting to advise the Council where we are in our budget and she needs to advise the Council if we are adding or changing positions. She hires who she wants, fires who she wants and we don’t have a clue as to why and what amount of money she is paying. Rumor has it that she complained first about Pam Tomlinson not knowing what she was doing. Although Tebo would have you believe it was Mayor Miller who would have said to get rid of Pam Tomlinson, from her deposition, she lies so much, it makes me wonder if Tebo herself knew Pam had a problem but she did nothing about it. But like everyone blames Trump, let’s blame “Miller”.
Tebo likes to sue people so Rhett Bullard did everything he could to protect her, followed by Spencer Lofton. If Tebo didn’t like something or someone they made sure it was changed to her liking. Although it was because of Tebo’s lack of supervisory and Human Resource skills, instead of working with Anita Rivers when Rivers brought up discrimination, after not being trained or allowed to excell, a lawyer was hired to protect Tebo. Even in the attorney’s summation, it was stated Rivers was discriminated against but by Pam Tomlinson. Wasn’t Tebo supposed to supervise everyone and if one employee was hateful to another and discriminating shouldn’t Tebo have handled it? But we paid for that attorney as well as Koberlein because Tebo had to be protected at your expense.
Tebo also did everything to fake scenarios stating Dr. Miller was a Rogue Council Member, not only costing Miller thousands of dollars of her own money but we the Town paid $13,000 plus to an attorney of Tebo’s choice to protect a contract town manager, who should have paid for her own attorney. This special privilege situation for a Town Manager should have been done. She’s not worth it and she does not even earn her salary. If the Town finally sues this incompetent Town Manager, perhaps we can get some of the money back that we spent on her to protect her when actually she should have been fired. She has mismanaged everything.
You probably read the evaluations by the Councilors of Stacy Tebo’s performance. Walter McKenzie who has been on the Council since Jesus was a pup, complained that he gave Tebo a poor score of 2 because she did not hold workshops. Walter wouldn’t do anything at workshops anyway. More than one of us including firemen have given our plea on the Fire Department which could be a simple fix, but no, McKenzie is still weighing things. If he ever made a clear decision, I think most of us would faint. In all the years he has been on the council, I do not know of one thing he has done for the Town of White Springs except the Folk Festival and the Quilt Shows and from what I know, he has made it difficult for the businesses which do wish to come here, to actually make a committment.
Walter McKenzie has never asked for the monthly financials and didn’t care when Tebo stated that the Payables don’t have to be shown to the Council, it is just as a favor. Well what about the Charter Walter? Don’t you think Tebo should follow it? Does Helen Miller have to do everything for you? Well I can tell you, she can’t help this town by herself and it is time that you did something for the People of White Springs , Walter, rather than give lip service. I thought that maybe you had changed after the past four years of terror, but I guess you have not.
Then there was Spencer Lofton who does nothing in the Sunshine and brags about what he can do with SHE. Well Spencer, unless you have three million dollars somewhere, the Town cannot afford SHE. And the suggestions you made regarding the types of stores/office which would be right for SHE would not generate enough money to pay $3,000,000. And if you don’t own the building in the first place, why would an investor wish to do anything with it? An investor would rather consider doing a build to suit for another business and possibly get 30% on his or her investment, but SHE is ridiculous and even Dennis Price agreed with you so I worry about his mental state as well.
Well on Spencer’s evaluation of Tebo he rated her high because of the Grants she secured. Tonja Brown likewise gave Tebo a great evaluation because of grants. Well Spencer and Tonja, you can give Stacy all of that Credit but some of these grants were worked on by former town managers Farley and Lawrence. Tebo just got the credit. But are these grants for the good?. Here White springs is bleeding and for each grant we have to not only pay the Grant Writer (Tebo sure doesn’t do the grant) but 25% of whatever we are awarded. So we have a perfectly good backhoe which was paid for and was used only 50 some hours. But No, we had to use LOFT money to give Ray Vaughn an excavator, then a new pickup truck and until there were complaints, he hasn’t even cleaned the ditches out. Why New? You could have leased an excavator and you could have secured a pickup truck at auction, like most small towns do.
Of Course Rhett Bullard rated Stacy as Perfect in any way and now this strikes me funny, NOT. “She works to increase the city’s tax base through economic development.” What economic Development has Stacy been involved with? If she would increase the tax base, she would find some way to spend it and not save it. She is only interested in her pay check and her own economic development, because certainly she is not interested in the Town but spends however she feels like and as a result White Springs is less than two months close to bankruptcy.
The Manager/ Council Form of Government was determined to be the best form of Government for Small Towns. Usually Small Towns do not have the types of mayors and councilors who have a bachelors degree or above, much less business acumn. So, even our Charter has stated that we prefer someone with a Bachelors Degree. However, Rhett Bullard has a Masters degree because he is an attorney; Stacy Tebo has a Master’s Degree and what has it done to assist the Town? The reason these latter two dislike Helen B. Miller, who has her Doctorate is the fact that Miller has worked in the Private Sector as well as the Public Sector and they are envious that she is not only intelligent but logical and can read financials, statutes and Contracts, which they cannot. If they can read them there is no proof that they can understand them.
Then we have Walter McKenzie who has “some college” but no degree. Spencer Lofton has a GED and possibly Tonja may have a high school diploma. We know that Tom Moore has a bachelor’s degree. And we need to work on our finances so the only councilors who probably know today how bad our finances really are are Helen Miller and Tom Moore. That is why Spencer and Tonja are in a Dream World of what they can do for economic development with little or no knowledge as to what it takes. And as to Walter McKenzie, he is too political to make a decision. He likes where he is at but goes the direction the wind blows….so CITIZENS PLEASE MAKE CERTAIN YOU TALK TO SPENCER, TONJA AND WALTER AND LET THEM KNOW WHAT WE WANT AND NEED. WE NEED STACY TEBO REMOVED AND WE NEED TO HIRE A MANAGER THAT CAN DO MORE THAN ONE THING AND WHO CAN ELIMINATE THE WASTE OF WHITE SPRINGS, INCLUDING WASTFUL AND NON-PERFORMING PEOPLE.
THE COUNCIL IS NOT LOOKING OUT FOR OUR SAFETY WHEN THEY KEEP STEVE STITH AS FIRE CHIEF WITH ANDREW GREENE AS ASSISTANT FIRE CHIEF; THEY ARE NOT LOOKING AT OUR FINANCIAL SITUATION AND TRYING TO DETERMINE HOW TO STILL RUN A TOWN AND GO LEAN. FRANKLY WE CANNOT AFFORD TEBO SINCE SHE IS ONLY DOING ONE JOB PART TIME AND CAN’T DO ANYTHING ELSE AND YET SHE MAKES $58,000 PLUS BENEFITS. WE HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THE OTHERS IN PUBLIC WORKS CALLED STREET AND ROADS ARE MAKING, AND WE HAVE A FINANCE DIRECTOR/CLERK WHO DOESN’T UNDERSTAND ACCOUNTING MUCH LESS FINANCE. WE NEED TO HAVE PAM TOMLINSON RETIRE AND HIRE SOMEONE TO CLEAN UP THE BOOKS SO WE KNOW EXACTLY WHERE WE STAND. BUT SERIOUSLY . STACY TEBO IS THE NUMBER ONE PROBLEM BECAUSE SHE IS THE WORST TOWN MANAGER IN THE HISTORY OF WHITE SPRINGS…AND THAT MEANS SHE IS WORSE THAN TOWNSEND, AND I CANNOT BELIEVE I AM HAVING TO SAY THAT.
I ASK FOR YOUR HELP. WE NEED A GOOD CHANGE IN WHITE SPRINGS.
KARIN for the blog