Tuesday, October 17, 2006

No account accountability

The seventy or so employees who reported abuse, mismanagement, and retaliation to the Board of Water and Power Commissioners in January 2006 waited to hear the second installment of words describing the investigatory findings commissioned by the Board of Water and Power Commissioners.

On May 3, 2006, it was disheartening, but not unexpected, to hear David Nahai, Board President, sum up the investigations into management of Custodial Services, Landscaping, Fleet Services, Security, and Information Technology. He said management was found to be "woefully incompetent." We can be assured those were carefully chosen words. Incompetence, most assuredly, is not, and most likely will never be, a violation at DWP.

In today's Board meeting, David Nahai took another peddle back and seemed to say the personnel problems at DWP amounted to isolated instances of management miscommunication that were allowed to fester. Moreover, Nahai indicated that the problems were, in many cases, attributed to managers who had retired and were not there anymore. He suggested a little management training may be in order.

This, of course, flies in the face of recent and ongoing litigation, confidential personnel settlements, mismanaged contracts, power outages, a backlog of infrastructure maintenance, high overtime, low productivity, low morale, a number of poor performance audits, and increasing rates.

Spontaneous woeful incompetence must be the new paradigm at DWP. No one seemed surprised enough to ask, "Who is in charge of the woeful incompetence at DWP?"