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Bonuses or No Bonuses, Supervisor of Elections and Commissioners Brawl in Ugly, 70-Minute Spectacle

| August 22, 2011

Something like that. (George Bellows's 'Stag At Sharkey's' (1909), at the Cleveland Museum)

Something like that. (George Bellows's 'Stag At Sharkey's' (1909), at the Cleveland Museum) Click on the image for larger view.

Flagler County Supervisor of Elections Kimberle Weeks appeared before the Flagler County Commission for the second time in two months to explain her budget today. It was ugly. It was offensive. It was mind-boggling. It was business as usual, when this particular constitutional officer appears before the commission. Occasional run-ins aside, no other encounters between representatives of two local agencies generate anywhere near the venomous feelings that these encounters do, nor with as much predictability as they do.

Commissioners ask questions. Weeks skirts, obfuscates, parries, but doesn’t quite answer. Commissioners ask again. Weeks turns the tables, asks about county staff, questions county accounting, charges unfairness. Commissioners rephrase. Weeks calls the question—the question—untrue. Weeks’ duels with the commissions have always been a mixture of teeth grinding and theater of the absurd, but Monday’s 70-minute spectacle broke new, unchartered ground where the inexplicable went where no budget workshop had gone before. It did little to help the credibility of the county’s most important office at election time.

It was left up to Commissioner George Hanns, who hadn’t said anything before and wouldn’t venture to say much again, to sum up the episode in a few words: “At a certain point in time you have to say, and don’t take this personal,” he told Weeks, “but you can always tell Miss Weeks, but you can’t tell her much, and what’s happening is, no matter what we say, you’re argumentative, and we’re all trying to work together for the benefit of our citizens.”

“I’m not trying to be argumentative,” Weeks said. “I’m simply trying to do my job and serve the voters. They’ve elected me to do my job. And you’re being able to restrict my ability to do my job, and I don’t know if it’s political or personal.”

It was neither: Monday’s encounter centered on matters of truth in accounting, if not merely matters of truth, centering on two central questions: has Weeks given bonuses to her employees before? And can Weeks account for her budget? Both questions, having to do with numbers and paperwork rather than beliefs or opinion, should have been readily answered. Neither were, at least not to the satisfaction of commissioners, who, as a result, rejected Weeks’ request for a roughly 7 percent increase in her budget—depending on which of Weeks’ numbers are counted—pending documented answers to those questions.

During Weeks’s June 13 appearance before the commission, Commissioner Barbara Revels asked her a direct question about her budget: “And no bonuses were given?”

“No,” Weeks replied categorically.

“I’m glad to hear that,” Revels said, “because I’ve had a number of phone calls from former employees and people they’re associated with that there was a bonus given sometime around the primary election last year in the amount of—the vicinity of $2,500 and you just flatly say that that’s not so. I was told that it would show as payroll, but not necessarily under a bonus situation, but it was shown as an increase in payroll. If we go back in payroll we’re not going to see any bump anywhere during the year last year?”

“No. My salaries remain the same.”

In fact, on Sept. 30, 2010, one employee, whose normal paycheck is $460.65, got a check cut for $3,120 before taxes. Sept. 30 is the last day of the supervisor’s fiscal year. It was a bonus check.

Commissioner Milissa Holland and other commissioners had received more information about the bonuses (that employee’s bonus check was not the only one). Without citing figures, Holland reminded the supervisor about her statement in June, and asked her if she wanted to amend the record. Weeks knew that the commissioners had gotten wind of the checks.

The exchange that followed must be reproduced almost in full to reflect accurately what commissioners were contending with.

The $3,120 bonus check's pay stub. Weeks says it was no bonus. Click on the image for larger view.

Weeks: “When I started people off I had to start them at a lower rate but under the understanding that there is money for you to get, but I have to see where I’m at as far as the end of the year. We cannot go over the budget. And for what you’re talking about in September of last year, since the people had started low, we made it through—we won the appeals on several of the unemployment cases that we had that we didn’t have to spend our operating, which would have had to be paid somewhere within the budget, because there’s no item within the budget to pay unemployment, it would have been paid most likely from that area of the budget. So when it was learned that we prevailed in those unemployment hearings and didn’t have to pay it, it was then that I went back and I gave the employees a 30-cents per hour that I had withheld, to be able to pay the unemployment that they should have been entitled to to begin with, but I wasn’t able to pay them what we had agreed at the time that they were hired.”

Holland: “So the answer is that you did give bonuses.”

Weeks: “That wasn’t a bonus. That was their pay that was withheld and given to them at a later date.”

“Wow,” Commissioner Nate McLaughlin said. “Mr. Coffey, you’re not withholding any pay, are you?”

Commission Chairman Alan Peterson: “Kimberle, salary is salary. Unemployment expense shouldn’t come out of a salary line.”

Weeks: “It was an employment agreement at the time the people were hired. It was an agreement that they understood.”

Peterson: “Whose agreement was it with?”

Weeks: “It was between me and the staff that I had hired. They were willing to start off with less, to keep the office operating and on its feet with that understanding, and it did not exceed the amount of the budget that I had put in there for the $172,715 which has not changed for a number of years.”

Holland: “So you’re saying that these people would have continued to be employed without you giving this—call it a bonus, don’t call it a bonus, whatever you want to call it—they would have continued being employed by the current, the original amount that they agreed to, whether you got unemployment, won cases or not won cases.”

Weeks: “No ma’am, that was their agreement to take on the job.”

McLaughlin: “Can we get copies of those agreements? Is that possible, to get copies?”

Weeks: “It wasn’t a written agreement, it was a verbal agreement. Here’s one of the staff members sitting right beside me.”

McLaughlin is disbelieving. “I’m sorry. I’m sorry.”

Holland: “I just think it’s highly inappropriate.” Holland continues: “You budget a certain amount whether you’re working through unemployment issues or not unemployment issues, whether you win cases or don’t win cases, you cannot in good conscience with public dollars then take it a step further and additionally compensate those individuals using dollars that are not allocated for that purpose.”

Weeks: “They were allocated for that purpose.”

Holland: “That’s not appropriate budgeting.”

At that point, Weeks names several highly paid county employees, charging that they’ve been given pay increases over recent years.

Kimberle Weeks. (© FlaglerLive)

Peterson changes subject and talks about polling places, but not for long. Commissioner Barbara Revels returns the discussion to salaries, asking whether any of Weeks’ employees are salaried. None are, Weeks says categorically, then, out of the blue, asks commissioners how many of their employees are on a particular type of retirement system, claiming that should be talked about if saving taxpayer money is the issue. Another outburst from several commissioners, more demands that Weeks answer the questions posed.

Peterson, a banker by profession, asks whether she has a reconciliation of her budget up to June or July. No.  Commissioners again are disbelieving.

Peterson: “Kimberle, how close to this year’s budget are you now, do you know?”

Weeks: “I do not.”

Peterson: “How do you know you’re not over budget right now?”

Weeks: “Because when they do the bills and the payroll and look at it, they keep me abreast of that. You’re in good shape, you have plenty of money, and I look at that.”

“Wow,” McLaughlin says, taking over the questoning. He asks if this fiscal year all employees got a 30-cent an hour raise. Weeks says no. Their rates of pay increased when they got that 30 cents an hour increase last year, she explains.

“So now they all get 30 cents an hour more?”

Not so, Weeks says. “I told you. When I got to the end of the fiscal year, and I knew how much money I had, and I would not go over budget, that it was at that time that these people would get more money.”

McLaughlin: “Retroactively.”

Nate McLaughlin (© FlaglerLive)

Weeks: “Retroactively. That’s exactly what it was, retroactively. It gave me that length of time to see their skills and their ability and what they were able to do, and that’s how they were paid, accordingly.”

Commissioners and Weeks verbally brawl again. Revels rephrases the question. “The question is,” Revels says, “in August of ‘10, you were paying somebody $7.70 an hour, hypothetically, and at Sept. 30th, when you had judged their behavior and you saw what their budget was, you gave them 30 cents, bringing them up to $8 an hour, hypothetically. Today, that $8 an hour person is getting what?”

Four pregnant seconds go by in silence. Then, Weeks says: “That’s not true.”

Revels: “I’m asking you, what does the person who was making $7.70 in August last year, what are they making today?”

Weeks: “That’s not true. I just got done telling you, it gave me that length of time to see their job performance.”

Revels: “You’re not answering the question, the question is what are they making today by the hour, compared to what they were making before?”

Weeks: “It really doesn’t matter, but I can’t tell you their rate of pay.”

McLaughlin: “It does to us, it matters to us. Would you answer that?”

Weeks: “Bottom line is, I have $172,715—“

McLaughlin: “Ms. Weeks, Ms. Weeks, I’m sorry, you’re going to stop doing that. We have a question.”

Weeks: “And I’ve answered your question.”

McLaughlin: “No, no you did not, you skirted it.”

Weeks could not answer, though she said she would reveal whatever documentation commissioners would ask for. The matter was left unresolved. Peterson thanked her. Weeks left. The commissioners took their lunch break, returned to talk about less intractable matters, like the economic development maze they’ve been traveling all year. They then took up the Weeks budget again, and decided not to approve any increase.

“I would want to see documents from her actual bookkeeping,”  Revels said.

“I’m frustrated that we don’t get very clear answers from some of the figures,” Peterson said, “but I do appreciate the fact that her requirements for next fiscal year are going to be more than they have been this year.”

The flaw in Weeks’ reasoning was this: Weeks kept citing the $172,715 allotment for salaries that she’s never gone over for the past four years. That’s true. But she’s never gone under it, either. She sees the sum as entirely spendable, regardless of whether employees clocked the hours or not. But no organization goes a whole year without some flux in its employee ranks. What the supervisor has been doing is ensuring that, by year’s end, no money was returned to county taxpayers if it could be disbursed in the form of bonuses. Holland pointed out the flaw and objected: “I can’t just say I have $172 to spend and I’m going to spend it,” she said.  “And there’s just a lot of information that was not disclosed that I still have questions about.”

Commissioners dispatched County Administrator Craig Coffey to hunt and gather last year’s budget “actual,” year-to-date budget figures, hourly pay rates, bonuses paid, when and what raises kicked in, and so on. Answers are due in early September.

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35 Responses for “Bonuses or No Bonuses, Supervisor of Elections and Commissioners Brawl in Ugly, 70-Minute Spectacle”

  1. K says:

    How do we get her out of office?

    Someone please post detailed instructions for me, as a citizen of Flagler County to have her removed and I will gladly take the lead on that.

    She is an idiot with a capital IDIOT

  2. Melinda Morais says:

    Should I consider running for this position again?

  3. Diana Becker LeBrun says:

    WOW, how can she behave that way?

  4. James Dean Fiske says:

    Oh, my achin’ gizzard! We need to remove her from office ASAP!

  5. Vincent Ciolino says:

    Its not uncommon for a manager to spend the approved budget especially in large corp and government office. The reasoning is if they do spend less than they wont get the amount of money in the next budget cycle. Her answers are weak she should stop playing cat and mouse and whoever oversees the budgeting needs to take a serious look at the goals and budget accordingly

  6. PJ says:

    Weeks is pathetic. she should resign or be removed. Her lack of experience is her problem The BOC should ask for her to step down. Stop the blame game on the BOC Weeks you simply don’t know what your doing. The BOC has their own issues but on this one your the problem,

  7. Mario DiGirolamo says:

    Incompetence personified.

  8. JOHN RICCI says:

    Ms. Weeks is running her dept. like her own fiefdom. Her actions are atrocious and as she is responsible to the electorate, I trust her opponent will point this out in the campaign. Anyway, as she is burning her bridges, she should start looking for a new job.

  9. kmedley says:

    Finally! Hopefully voters of Flagler County will see and understand what we “disgruntled” former employees have known for years. In my opinion, Weeks has been padding her budget, at the expense of poll workers, in order to have ample monies left over in order to pay bonuses and still have some dollars to give back to the BOCC so as not to draw any attention to her budget. Thank goodness there are some who keep things like paycheck stubs. Thank you to FlaglerLive for following this annual brawl and exposing the truth. I hope you also request copies of the bonus checks, the regular paychecks paid on the same date and a payroll history of all employees which documents pay increases.

  10. Beware says:

    Weeks stated she did give retroactive pay increases, and that she also gave monies back in this category in the $67,000 when she returned funds in 2009-2010; she did not spend the entire $172,715. She clearly stated she didn’t have a full staff that year, and that is why she gave the monies back to the board, yet the board argues that funds were returned were for the Special Elections.

    Weeks also sited Florida Statute 129.202(2) The independence of the supervisor of elections shall be preserved concerning the purchase of supplies and equipment’ the selection of personnel; and hiring, firing, and setting of salaries of such personnel; however nothing herein contained shall restrict the operation of any lawfully established county civil service system.

    Weeks had an agreement with the people she hired, and that is what she did. She followed the Florida Statues, and she stayed within her budget. Unemployment was an expense, and had to be paid-it was a wise decision to make sure she didn’t fall short at the end of the year. Monies of staff were withheld until the end of the fiscal year and then given to them. Weeks could have given them more, but she returned it to the board as unused funds. The annual independent auditors didn’t find any wrong doing. It seems to me the board wants to micromanage, and doesn’t want the supervisor to have the ability make decisions for the elections office. Weeks has the lowest budget of all the constitutional offices in Flagler County. Weeks’ budget is far lower than any other comparable county supervisor of elections office. Weeks is the only constitutional office in Flagler County that does not have a multi million dollar budget. Peggy Rae Border (Weeks’ predecessor) increased her budget an average of 9.04% annually since 2001-2002 to 2008-2009; for a total of 63.29% over this 7 year period. The only time the elections office budget was reduced was in 2008-2009 when Border planned her retirement.

    It is not the commissioner’s responsibility to micromanage the elections office. Weeks does have a line item of $172,715 to pay her 5 employees, and how she does that is her choice. She is not exceeding that budget amount; in fact thousands of this $172,715 was returned to the board in 2009-2010 because Weeks didn’t have a complete staff for the year. The current staff’s line item for salaries is the same as it was for the former staff. Weeks has the same amount of money to pay her staff as Border had to pay her staff. Far too often we have heard comments from the board such as from Bob Abbott “we try to piss you off”, (I feel like I am running an office on 4 bald tires) park the car stated by Milissa Holland, Milissa Holland also commented last budget year “there are no significant elections coming up” when Weeks presented her budget, and most recently when Commissioner Peterson wanted precincts reduced “if the voters don’t like it, blame it on the commissioners”.

    What has been over looked in this biased article is the fact that Weeks Predecessor, Peggy Rae Border was gouging the City of Palm Coast when conducting their municipal election by charging the city for regular hours of work. Border then put that money back in her general office fund and issued over-time pay to her employees following the municipal election. It was explained by Weeks that is how it has been shown on the budget that only 60 hours of over time were needed to conduct a countywide election. It was also explained that Border charged the city for more hours of overtime to conduct and municipal election than she budgeted the county to conduct a county wide elections. Perhaps this is why Commissioner Barbara Revels is looking for municipal election money in the Supervisor’s budget. It was stated this will not be done under Weeks’ administration.

    There are two elections to consider in the 2011-2012 budget, and it is obvious the budget can’t remain flat. The areas the budget increased were for poll workers pay, poll workers training, poll worker travel, and maintenance. It was stated maintenance would not have increased had the county not passed on the bill for insuring equipment to the supervisor; an expense that has not been paid by the elections office in the past. It is shameful the board may jeopardize elections by cutting funds in these areas, and not understanding the importance of poll workers. Three of the five commissioners, Revels, Peterson and Haans are up for re-election in 2012.

    Weeks’ has a point-the board should clean out their closet before they try to clean out hers. They avoided questions that made them accountable when it came to the retirement and salaries of their staff. No one in the elections office is being paid the excessive ($50,000 to up over $100,000) salaries the board pays their staff that we have seen posted by the News Journal.

    It is interesting Flagler Live that you don’t report on the salaries of the board that have increased, and the different retirement categories. If the commissioners were sincere in being concerned of our tax dollars, they would not have skirted around the questions presented. Weeks stated, lets be fair, and compare.

    In 1999 when the city of Palm Coast incorporated the county should have cut jobs then and allowed those people to go work for the City of Palm Coast. The Board of county commissioners and their staff serve only the people here in Flagler County in the west side and in the Hammock. There is no reason for them to have all these high salaries, and high retirements. No one in the elections office is making high salaries, and they serve 100% of the county. The elections office doesn’t have 1 supervisor for every two employees.

    Why did Barbara Revels avoid the question presented to her last week when asked if she would rent her waterfront property for $500/month when the board allowed Bings to be leased for so low, for so long?

    It is also comical and confirmation at how out of touch commissioner Revels is when she stated she didn’t know hourly rate paid employees could get unemployment. Does she know if she has paid unemployment to her staff, and how much or does she just approve anything put before her by Coffey?

    Nate McLaughlin is seeking revenge on Weeks for the lies he told about his paperwork filed with the elections office that he claimed were lost. He must have prepared them with disappearing ink too as they are blank—he simply didn’t provide the information, and wanted to blame anyone other than accept responsibility himself. The Ethics Commission saw through him and fined him anyway.

    Is all this personal or political?

  11. HELP says:

    Where does it state “BONUS” on this check? Where is “BONUS” indicated anywhere?

  12. Angela Smith says:

    Ms. Weeks’ behavior is completely unprofessional; I don’t understand why it has been tolerated for so long. I think an investigation is needed SOON, before there is time for records to “disappear”.

  13. tulip says:

    There were some good qualified people that ran last time and look what we wound up with, all because people remembered the hand waving on street corners.

    I hope some qualified people run this time, including Melinda Morais and voters will be smarter this time around.

  14. says:

    and she once said that the people from the north are dishonest, i understand she is a native of florida

  15. Nick D says:

    My sincere apologies to all Flagler County Residents; I voted for Mrs. Weeks during the last election for Supervisor of Elections. I am always man enough to stand up and say when I am wrong; AND BOY WAS I WRONG ON THIS ONE! Please be assured that I will not make the same mistake in the next election for SOE.

    A big THANK YOU to the county commissioners for holding her feet to the fire.

    Furthermore…if Mrs. Weeks is unable to answer questions and/or provide adequate financial documentation then we need to file a complaint with the State and her office needs to be audited.

  16. kmedley says:

    wsh302 – She is not a native Floridian. She is originally from Michigan. I’m not pointing that out to make a dig at folks from the North. I just wanted you to know she is not a native.

    HELP – If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, chances are it’s a duck. Former employees were told it was a bonus. As far as this “verbal agreement” goes, I was present during the interview and hiring process of 2 current employees. There was never any such agreement.

    I can’t wait for the BOCC to obtain all copies of the bonus checks, the regular pay checks the employees received on the same day as the bonus, the last day before the fiscal year ended, and the payroll history showing all raises. I think folks will be amazed.

    To all of those that ran before, PLEASE, reconsider and to those who have not yet decided or considered, PLEASE do so.

    IMO, the bonuses were designed to accomplish one goal, to keep two current employees happy so they would not leave the office. These are the two that are running her office and honestly, without them, she cannot run that office.

  17. Reds says:

    How can she not know her budget? How can she not know the rate of pay for only 5 employees? How can she run a department and not have a clue about her finances? I can see why the commission “micro manages” her!!

  18. kmedley says:

    I just did the math for the $3120 gross bonus. A $.30 per hour retroactive pay would mean this employee was paid for 10,400 hours and at 40 hours per week, that’s 260 weeks. This employee was there for less than one year.

  19. The America says:

    It seems to me that the BOCC should look further into other salaries the county tax payers are paying
    for. $7.30 an hour seems to me to below poverty level when the County Administrator and the County Attorney Al Hadeed makes almost $200,000. a year with all there perks and mind you they only service
    20% of Flagler County. Al Hadeed has a budget of nearly $550,000. for the year of 2012. Do the BOCC
    Explore his salaries under the microscope. People stop being prejudice with the few negative blogs that
    Are written here about Kimberly Weeks, you should do a little investigating on your own as to how the
    BOCC really spend your money. Investigate the big audit that was done after the county and court house
    Buildings were built. The $5,000,000. That was taken from one fund and applied to another. They surely
    Were not micromanaging those money’s. They are squabbling over thirty cents that she gave her employees. Shame on them. This time could be put to better issues.

  20. The America says:

    Oh by the way, the audit cost the tax payers $100,000. And when the BOCC got the findings they just ignored it. The audit should have had a follow up by the Auditor Generals Office. Seems to me the BOCC
    Is more concerned about Kimberly Weeks staffs wages when they do not compare to what the board paysTheir own staff rather than focusing on providing adequate funding to conduct our elections.

  21. Rob says:

    The commissioners do appear to have the proverbial “hard on” for Ms. Weeks.
    They have been ripping her all along.

    When the clerk of court, Gail Wadsworth, demands appropriations above and beyond the only thing they can do is fold like an accordion.

  22. kmedley says:

    America – None of this micromanaging would be needed if Weeks could construct a comprehensive, and more importantly, a defensible budget. I bet Mr. Hadeed can defend his budget and provide legitimate expenditures that support his budget.

  23. black and white says:

    I agree with you Rob—it is as clear as black and white what the board has been doing.

  24. Ella says:

    I was there and was shocked and disgusted by the exchanges of ALL the people who participated in the “discussion”. They are all there to lead not act like kids on the playground. Stop all the infighting and act like adults. Work TOGETHER for the better of the community!

  25. The America says:

    I have a question to ask all you disgruntled bloggers, were you at the meeting on Monday? If you were
    You are all a one sided bunch, because the BOCC were not very professional and if that were the clerk of the court, Gail Wadsworth, they would never treated her the way they treat and treated Kimberly Weeks.

  26. kmedley says:

    Yes, America, I was there and witnessed the back and forth firsthand. I guess you have forgotten how the Board questioned the Clerk when she was in the funding hotseat. Even with all that, not once did the Clerk behave like Weeks. If Weeks could defend her budget, she wouldn’t draw the fire from the Board.

  27. The America says:

    [Note: the following three comments, consolidated here, were posted under three different names by the same person. Please don’t do that: anonymity is one thing; deception is something else altogether, and won’t be allowed.FL]

    KMedley-With your knowledge of the elections office, pease explain your findings of unopened 2008 ballots in the ballot box during your time of employment in this office.

    Weeks defended her budget. The commissioners wanted to talk about a budget from 2 years ago, and all they could talk about was the paying of her staff, which she has the right and authority to do at her discretion. Weeks justified what she did and why, and the board wanted to take it in a different direction. Fortunately some can see this for what it is.

    Commissioner McLaughlin is a joke…he’s bankruptcy shows he can’t handle his own personal finances and he’s attempting to direct the supervisor of elections. Smart lady–she’s not filed bankruptcy! Flagler County needs to wake up—quick!

  28. kmedley says:

    America – I’m not quite sure about the parenthetical note under your post, although it is reminiscent of a tactic used by others when posting on other sites, but I am willing to respond.

    At one time a drop box was affixed to the wall of the room that houses the Xerox machine. A key to that box was not readily available and a search through all the keys located in that office ensued. I found the key and it opened the box. Yes, there were unopened ballots in that box. SOE Weeks was immediately told of the situation. The ballots, as I remember, were photographed, as found, unopened, and each employee completed a written statement as to the finding. We could only conclude these had been forgotten, since neither myself nor SOE Weeks began employment in that office until 2009. I believe the ballots, along with our statements, were placed in the safe. I think they were later placed with the election records for the 2008 election. County Maintenance was then called to move the drop box from the Xerox room to the wall located behind the front counter.

    Weeks deflected attention away from her budget, just as she, IMO, padded the budget in order to provide just enough of a return to the BOCC, to deflect attention away from the bonuses paid. It’s not as simple as stating all the BOCC wanted to do was discuss a budget that ended on 9/30/2010. The BOCC has every right to question a Constitutional officer when taxpayer dollars are requested. And when answers provided to specific questions have been less than transparent, they are within the provisions of the statutes to request any documents they deem necessary to resolve outstanding budget issues.

    In Okaloosa County, the county tax collector provided bonuses to his employees. Five employees received at least $15,000 in each of the last 3 fiscal years. One received a total of $52,500 over that time frame. The bonuses came out of the tax collector’s personnel service budget and were “based on the availability of unused budgeted personnel funds and on superior accomplishments”. Sound familiar? By the way, could someone please let SOE Weeks know the budget category is PERSONNEL SERVICES, not Personal Services? There is a difference. There was public outcry, and the attorney for Tax Collector Chris Hughes just happened to be Michael Grogan, Weeks’ attorney de jour. This elected official doled out $692,000.00 of taxpayer dollars to employees without any rhyme or reason and then later stated the bonuses were none of the public’s business, ‘I am a constitutional officer’. Since then, Florida has enacted legislation that regulates the awarding of bonuses. The new law is The Public Officials Integrity Act, effective as of July 1, 2011.

    Her justification for a $3120 bonus is laughable at best and clearly anyone with a calculator can debunk the explanation. Weeks’ favorite statute to cite is Florida Statute 129.202(2). However, she consistently overlooks the final portion of that paragraph, as well as the preceding six sections of that law. The law reads:

    (2) The independence of the supervisor of elections shall be preserved concerning the purchase of supplies and equipment; the selection of personnel; and the hiring, firing, and setting of salaries of such personnel; however, nothing herein contained shall restrict the operation of any lawfully established county civil service system.(emphasis added)

    It is the final however that Weeks omits and probably fails to comprehend. I’m sure Mr. Grogan can enlighten her.

    With regards to Commissioner McLaughlin, I only know that which has been reported, with regards to his bankruptcy. I would note his opponent also incurred a bankruptcy and still served as a County Commissioner before being defeated by Commissioner McLaughlin. The stigma once associated with bankruptcy has become quite passé by today’s standards. However, not filing a financial bankruptcy does not prevent one from exhibiting signs of possibly becoming morally bankrupt. I certainly hope SOE Weeks becomes neither financially nor morally bankrupt. As for questioning Weeks about her budget, I think McLaughlin and the rest of the Commissioners are on the right track. But then, that’s just the opinion of a “disgruntled” former employee. I think Thomas Jefferson would be proud, “Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear”.

  29. Bob E. says:

    I have read these posts and there is one thing I have not heard mentioned, and yes I was at the meeting on Monday. If . Weeks had a budget of (hypothetically) $500,00 last year and returned (hypothetically) $50,000 to the BOCC at years end, then her $500,000 budget should have been $450,000, because that is what she spent, so she over-budgeted. Now she is presenting a new budget of $550,000 knowing that last year she only spent $450,000. We have to refer to last years budget because she has no idea where this years budget stands, over, under or even or if she will have money to return to us, the people she says elected and therefore employ her. She has taken the gross of THIS years budget, which was higher than the budget in which she gave money back and then increased it over 7% because of 2 elections next year, but in this budget cycle. Some additional increase is necessary, but if you are over-budgeting then a flat budget (same amount of $) should cover the additional costs, or she can always go to the BOCC with a cost analysis (she will never know what that is) and ask for more $. I was amused by one of the previous posts which stated she had a line item budget for an expense. If you remember her knowledge of a “LINE ITEM BUDGET” statement in an earlier budget hearing when she said she had submitted a line item budget because the paper she submitted it on had lines on it, (I am not kidding, you can go back and listen to the hearing it is in the archives here).

  30. kmedley says:

    Bob E. – I remember the “line item budget” line. It still brings a smile to my face. You are right with your point and analysis. But you need to understand how Weeks perceives this issue. In her mind, her office is severely underfunded by the BOCC because she has done her version of a cost analysis using figures from other counties. You will cite the same counties everytime she gets the chance. Using your hypothetical, when she returned the $50k, she should have known from where those savings were realized and applied that knowledge to this year’s budget. As I have stated, I have my own theory in that she is padding the budget and when she has unused funds, no matter which category, she feels she can use the entire budgeted amount as long as she does not exceed the total amount that has been allocated by the Board. By padding the budget, she is able to return just enought to deflect attention and still pay bonuses. She has two employees she believes she must retain at all costs because she feels she would be unable to run the office without them. She may be right. At any rate, these two employees are aware of her fears and I suspect she would walk through fire and obtain funds by any means possible in order to meet the salary demands of these two.

  31. palmcoaster says:

    No doubt here that kmedley has a very spearheaded agenda to defeat and smear the current supervisor of elections Ms. Weeks. So does the BOCC and shame on them specially, you Nate McLaughing as this is not what I elected you for …typical witch hunting of whoever is not the Who is Who elite in this county.
    Nate you erred big in your campaign financial disclosure and I forgave you as consider it a human error given the difficult forms to be filled to complete the task..also overlooked by Weeks as during her assimilation and learning process being new in her seat to me was justified! We all make human mistakes. What about some respect and compassion for others as we exercised with you then. Maaan have the elite changed you so much already! I have seeing this process over and over again every time I helped and supported one of my peers and even friends to be elected as soon as they take their seats, fall under the control of the Who is Who and totally forget their promises to the voters.
    All this fanfare for some lousy $3,700 while Commissioner Holland goes and approves shamefully 27% plus increase, for her TDC buddy Heiser with flying colors and also pushes for the $400,000 of my tax dollars for her next blunder for ED to accommodate probably some Elite CEO that knows jack what has to be done for ED here? Hope Nate mends his behavior and votes with common sense against these two Holland’s proposals and let Peterson and Holland be the only two really stabbing the local taxpayers with their yes vote, as they are not for reelection. I will vote out and also campaign against any incumbent that votes yes in these two shameful proposals. And sure will remember for the next time around to be elected the non incumbents now, as well.
    I will also remind kmedley that when Holland’s friend and pro bonus for her Holland foundation (I believe and please correct me if I am wrong), current rehired county attorney Al Hadeed was fired from his legal position of many years for this county, (about 1997 or 1998 think was) as soon as when past Hutch King commissioner was elected and given then County Clerks of Courts Syd Crosby (a Democrat) findings documented claims of Hadde’s over inflating overtime and unjustified high pays wether salaries, bonus etc to his assistant’s and into the hundreds of thousands as sure the budget lines were non very way high over budget was outrageous. So please look for a better example not Mr. Hadeed. That BOCC does not cry foul doesn’t mean waste of our tax revenues do not take place, depending Who does it!
    Probably with Holland’s as a BOCC top banana now, anything goes with him. The Who is Who at works.
    The ensuing witch hunting after Syd Crosby really worked on the voters heads and he lost his reelection to Who we have now with her uncontested, over inflated budget lines and always hungry for more of our taxes Gail W. (Republican) and approved all she demands with no problem by BOCC. No transparency is what she does in detail with the collected fines…soo? Where are Holland and the others on this one.
    Sid Crosby was a good clerk of courts that worked for us, the people and kept the public government records always ready and open to all.
    Crosby was also afterwards Bunnell City Manager for a brief period.. Below some of his stands:

  32. kmedley says:

    Palmcoaster – Nothing much to say other than WOW! You have the same knack for deflecting as does Weeks, along with the same flare for the English language. It’s also quite curious you bring up the former clerk Syd Crosby and Hutch King in the same sentence. I only know of one other person that does that. That same person still seeks the advice of the former clerk and raises many questions about the election that King lost. This fanfare is not about a mere $3700. From what I know, the bonuses total much more than $3700.00 and pay increases far exceeded the claimed $.30 per hour retroactive agreement. As for your passion with regards to the budgets of Mr. Hadeed and the BOCC, might I suggest you take a page from Weeks’ book and begin the task of requesting public records ad nauseum and see if you can find evidence to support your claims that would warrant a state audit.

  33. Kevin says:

    Well stated kmedley!

  34. bigfatbullies says:


  35. Pam Andrews says:

    just wanted to add my 2 sense about our current SOE and her 2 deputies.
    I have been a poll worker for about 15 years, starting in Volusia and the moving to Flagler,
    I contacted the office here to work in my precinct.
    Below is a letter I wrote to then Christ and the Gov. Scott

    I started out as an Inspector, to Assistant Clerk and for the
    past 2 elections Clerk, of my precinct.
    I have been told that I do a great job,
    however have become upset with what has been going on in my
    county of Flagler. And will not be returning which breaks my heart.

    What I am about to inform you of may end my reign as a
    Gatekeeper to Democracy, but feel it necessary to inform
    you as you are the only one that the SOE has to answer to.

    I have heard many horror stories, but not hearing, or seeing
    for myself I could only defend Kim Weeks, FCSOE.
    I am now even sorry that I voted for her and if I,
    could take it back I would.

    During a mandatory training session for this past election,
    I was totally shocked by what was witness by myself and more
    than half of the Clerks of Flagler County.

    One of the Deputies of SOE,Darlene Walker, publicly humiliated
    an elderly Clerk.
    She was totally out of line and embarrassed the lady so badly
    that she ran out in tears.
    I followed her out to console her but, was not able to do so.
    I found later that she resigned as did many others that day.
    Darlene Walker never has apologized.

    I also found that the entire previous staff of SOE Peggy,
    walked out for the very same reasons.
    Kim Weeks, Kathy Smith,and Darlene Walker, need to be schooled on
    how to treat those who most even volunteer their time to the
    elections process.

    Kim hired these 2 women as she only had experience as a Clerk,
    same as myself.
    She was, and is still totally not equipped to have this job and
    allows these two deputies to run the entire office.
    I even witnessed that she actually fears them in some way.
    They treat people as though they were enemies of war not
    people who find it a duty.

    They not only treat poll workers,and the other SOE Deputies,
    Chris Vickers, Doreen Henandaz, and Kaiti Lenhart this way,
    they treat citizens who walk into that office in the exact manner.

    I, myself witnessed this, as a Deputy working early voting.
    People skills are important with any position in the office,
    Kim, Darlene, and Kathy have absolutely no clue as to how to
    treat the citizens of this county as well as those who work under them.

    While working early vote I was treated as though I could do nothing
    right and every turn I made seemed to be wrong in their eyes.
    I assure you this was not the case, as I am and have always
    been a rule follower and treat people with the respect and dignity
    that they deserve. Kim, Kathy and Darlene, do not.

    One of the Deputies of SOE, went to HR in the Flagler city building to
    file a complaint and they treated her worse than before.

    During a canvassing of Early Vote in the presence of a judge and
    other county officials they treated them badly.
    There is absolutely no excuse for this.

    I would have walked away myself but I am one of the many unemployed.
    I need all the financial help I can get, which leads me to another reason
    I write to you…

    When I received my check for early vote and the general election,
    found they had deducted taxes, which in the 10 years of being a
    poll worker has never been done before.

    I sent 2 emails and made numerous calls to inquire about these deductions.
    As of yet, no one from SOE has responded.
    So, I called 3 other counties to inquire as to procedure and they
    informed me that it is Federally mandated to only make said deductions
    when $1300.00 is earned which I did not.

    I even called a few poll workers to ask if deductions were made on
    their earnings and they did not, so why were taxes deducted from me?

    Darlene and Kathy are not residents of Flagler County, they stay in a
    camper on Old KIngs Rd. not in the county of legal residence.
    In some ways like a parent giving false address to have their child
    attend a school of their choice, which I find is not right and somewhat
    criminal as to take jobs away from a Flagler resident like myself
    who is unemployed.

    I am one of many who feel the 3 need to be reprimanded and I am sure
    I am not the only one who has made the same complaints against them.
    The way they treat staff, poll workers, volunteers, and citizens
    is beyond wrong.

    after sending this letter to many others, it was forwarded on to Ms. Weeks, by pure mistake but I could care less as I would tell all this to her face.
    She then sent me a check for around 13 dollars for taxes being deducted and I assure you not my point to make at all.
    She also responded to a letter that I left in the lunchroom about how I felt at that time and no longer do I feel good about working there or how I had been treated.
    Since the only two people who treated the pollworkers with any respect have been terminated and SOE Weeks fought their unemployment benefits to no avail, when you lie, most of the time you get caught up, and she is finally getting what she deserves, I pray that they investigate her thoroughly and audit her books…
    She also accused me of being friends with the two she fired and before working there had never met either of them…
    I realize I may be rambling but I am mad. and think all of Flagler should be mad as well and get her out before she spends another dime on herself or her 2 deputies…

    I agree with big fat bully that Kimber Medley should take the place of our current SOE

    Kim Weeks if you read this, I never knew Kimber until after you fired Chris and Doreen.
    and life is a circle of which eventually it will catch up with you.

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