Friday, February 17, 2006

In the News Again

It looks like Houston Mayor Pro-Tem Carol Alvarado is in the spotlight again, this time for the actions of her subordinates rather than her own colorful language.
...[F]our of Carol Alvarado's staff members were allegedly given huge improper bonuses.
[Documents] show the four workers were paid $130,000 in bonuses, illegally, the mayor said.

The documents show Rosita Hernandez' base pay was $72,000 and she got $48,000 in bonus pay.

Florence Watkins' base pay was $50,000 and she received nearly $47,000 in bonus pay.

Christopher Mays' base salary was $40,000, but you can tack on a $20,000 bonus.

Theresa Ortiz was supposed to only make $29,000, but received a bonus of $17,000.
Almost makes you want to take a job as a civil servant. Of course, Ms. Alvarado denied any knowledge of the "irregularities," but some former officeholders wonder.
"It is possible, I suppose, that the staff did it without her knowledge, but if that happened they're possibly looking at some jail time because they did not follow the procedures.," said former Councilmember Mark Goldberg.

"You hired three of the people who have been put on administrative leave. Had one of them under your direction been given a $50,000 bonus, would you have known that? That would double their salary. That would have had to come through me. I would have to sign off on that," said former Mayor Pro Tem Gordon Quan.
Sounds like Ms. Alvarado has some 'splainin' to do!

UPDATE: David Benzion and Anne Linehan have more on this story.


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