Thursday, January 20, 2011

Genesee Co. Industrial Development Agency, a Cesspool of Corruption?

Before I make a comment, take a look at the conclusions in the report that addresses the compensation awarded to those in charge of our Industrial Development efforts.

1. Prior to 2010, the GCIDA had no formal policies in place regarding bonus payments, but still had a practice of awarding bonuses to its employees. Any bonus program must be clearly defined in the adopted policies and procedures of the agency. The bonus payment practices followed by the GCIDA also do not comply with guidance provided in State Comptroller’s Opinion 2000-9 regarding provisions for additional compensation. The GCIDA’s current practices must be terminated and its bonus program suspended until such time as its policies conform to this guidance.



2. We recommend that all bonus payments provided to GCIDA employees during the period when it had no formal policies be recovered.


3. Bonuses may not be paid to individual employees based on the collective performance of the organization. Bonuses may only be paid in accordance with a performance evaluation program that pre-establishes clear and measurable goals that the qualifying employee must meet. The GCIDA bonus payment program should be based on individual performance standards that are specific and clearly differentiated from the normal job duties of the employees, and specify the amount of bonus payments to be received for meeting those identified standards prior to the services being provided. This program should be formally documented and described and formally approved and adopted by the board.


4. The bonus payment provided to the consultant in January 2009 is not provided for under the terms of the consultant agreement and is inappropriate. As a result, the board of the GCIDA should act to recover this $500 payment.


5. All bonus payments to be awarded should be formally presented and approved by the board prior to making payment by a compensation committee properly established in the by-laws of the GCIDA.


6. The board should re-evaluate the appropriateness of the executive director’s compensation package, given that he receives the highest salary of any county IDA executive director, and the total compensation he received in 2009, including the bonus, was nearly $100,000 more than any other public employee in Genesee County.
 
Of course, those in charge cried foul!  They feel that they should act as a private business even though they are 90% funded by Genesee Co. taxpayers.
 
Yet, this study showed that the executive director received, in part:
"For 2009, his salary was set at $153,000, with a three percent increase in 2010. In addition to a bonus, the executive director was originally provided with membership in a country club of his choice, and a $900 monthly allowance for automobile use. These benefits were dropped in the 2009 through 2011 employment agreement, and replaced with a life insurance policy and a deferred compensation plan."
A membership to a country club of his choice?  How many other county employees are given this perk?
The executive director's makes more than our Genesee Co. District Attorney.  He is one of the top paid IDA executives in New York State.  Folks, our county is so small, that most times everyone in NYS forgets we exist.  If he were bringing good paying jobs to Genesee Co., then perhaps all of this could be justified.  The sad fact is that his track record for bringing jobs is dismal.
Want to read more about this latest fiasco. 
Take a look at:

http://wnymedia.net/ccharvella/2011/01
http://wnymedia.net/ccharvella/2011/01/88480/