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City Council Vice President Lori Boyer
Jax Daily Record Tuesday, May 17, 201612:00 PM EST

Inspector general evaluation criteria set; no interim yet for Cline

by: David Chapman

The city’s inspector general has criteria to be properly evaluated.

Now all the city needs is an inspector general.

Following the mid-April resignation of Inspector General Tom Cline, the position’s selection and retention committee over the next several months will be faced with the same task it had a year ago.

Cline’s last day is May 27.

However, the committee in the next two weeks has to find an interim to fill the role — something members talked about but couldn’t agree on Monday.

The group brushed aside a formal application-and-interview process to instead this week submit names to the city’s human resources department to review.

From there, the department’s director will review qualifications, pare down names and submit those best-suited for consideration during a special meeting Monday.

“We don’t have long between now and the end of May,” said City Council Vice President Lori Boyer, who chairs the committee.

Boyer said she had spoken to numerous retired judges and others in the legal field about their interest in what is hoped to be at most a four-month stint overseeing the relatively new office.

So far, she hasn’t received any commitments to pursue it.

The idea of someone currently working in the office assuming the lead role was pitched but subsequently shot down.

Cline said it would be better to use someone in the office who knows the city and the work being done.

His suggestion was Lisa Green, the office’s director of investigations.

“I think that would you give you the most consistency,” Cline told the group.

The concern, said committee member and State Attorney Angela Corey, was the potential awkwardness should Green seek the position full-time.

Plus, Green’s day-to-day work is valuable and should continue, Corey said.

Council President Greg Anderson, sitting in the audience, agreed.

Whoever fills the role will work fewer than 30 hours per week, a figure that will keep benefits from being applied.

That person also will have the help of two women who helped establish the office more than a year ago, former Palm Beach County Inspector General Sheryl Steckler and city Ethics Officer Carla Miller.

Steckler has agreed to work part-time on the day-to-day operations aspect of the office with whoever is selected.

Miller will spend five to 10 hours a week dealing with the office’s budget in the coming review, while also negotiating Memorandums of Understanding with the city’s various independent agencies.

Starting Jan. 1, the inspector general picked up oversight duties of those offices after voters last year overwhelmingly said it should.

The teamwork-style effort will get the office through the next several months as the more time-intensive search for a full-time replacement is conducted.

The hope is for that person to be selected by the Oct. 1 start of the fiscal year.

Once they’re in, they’ll be able to be properly evaluated now, too. The committee green-lighted a matrix that incorporates performance criteria led by “achieving results.”

Covering 40 percent of the 100-point scale, the measure includes how the office’s investigations, audits and contract oversight and review lead to cost savings through identifying fraud, waste and abuse in the city.

The other performance portions deal with the inspector general’s business acumen, ability to build coalitions and leadership, all valued at 20 percent.

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