BELLEAIR BEACH -- Words uttered by Mayor Mike Kelly about a city employee at last week's Finance Committee left some listeners in uncomfortable and shocked silence.
In its meeting July 29, the Finance Committee, under the chairmanship of Bert Cutler, was examining various portions of the city's draft budget for fiscal year 2005.
Kelly's cruel words skewered the job performance of Angela Eisenberg, who has been employed at city hall for seven years as a receptionist and secretary.
When looking at salaries and benefits of some employees, Cutler made the observation at the meeting that health insurance had been going up consistently and that "we're going to have to cap these benefits."
This led to Donna Durante, a Finance Committee member, suggesting that because there was "no longer a public works department" perhaps Eisenberg's job should be looked at.
Cutler corrected her, pointing out that the sewer department had been dropped.
In that case, Durante wanted to know, "what is her actual daily job?"
One member observed, "She has quite a job load, right mayor?"
"She has no job load," Kelly said.
After the committee agreed to have the Personnel Committee examine job functions, Kelly went on to say in respect to Eisenberg's job -- "She's got nothing to do. When we give her something like a purchase order or a letter to write we get disastrous results."
Kelly did point out that Eisenberg was very popular with city residents.
"She's great with the public," he said. "She's a great receptionist and people love her. She's like a greeter at WalMart."
While these words uttered at a public meeting and recorded were met with shocked silence, Kelly later said, commenting on the health insurance benefits that Eisenberg received for herself and her family, "These should be adjusted for just her and her spouse."
Employee plans are administered under a general policy and are not usually tailored for individuals to increase or decrease benefits.
Return to Home Page
Return to Current Edition