Checks & Balances

One of the most important founding elements of this country lies in the varying checks & balances. The Founding Fathers knew that it is likely that one entity or facet of government will overstep; therefore, another facet would have to oversee or sign off, as it were.

Strangely enough, the ECSO is not privy to any oversight on the bulk of their budget. The fundamental problem with that is the clear misappropriation of LET funds exposed over the years by this agency. Currently, they are still out of compliance with Florida Statute on that, because they are not following up with the receivers of state/county funds to make sure it was spent properly. That is one of the checks and balances to verify there is no misappropriation by the agencies in receipt of money spent by the county. It’s common practice to require follow up documentation to show where the money went. Most agencies have banned organizations from future funds if they refuse to comply with this follow up accounting. They are shut off from state/county money. Why is this necessary? Governmental accountability….plain and simple. Trust but verify, as Ronald Reagan said.

So we still have millions of dollars being unaccounted by the ECSO, then I find out through varying requests that there is so much more that the ECSO juggles that never sees oversight. With the LET records being dubious at best, and the deputy raises that were provided for by the county but never trickled down to the deputies over the past years (as exposed in the budget impasse of late) when will taxpayers and the county coffers demand accountability and hold the ECSO up to the fiduciary standard that the rest of the county is held to?

Consider this:

This agency can charge a fee for gathering public records if a request is made. Few requests will have any costs associated with the request. If a person is told there is an exorbitant fee for a record request that should garner attention. Unless the request is so labor intensive, or requests information not normally maintained, the majority of the public records requests are easily gathered. In today’s technology world records are available with a few keystrokes in most cases.

Recently, a question was raised about the Escambia County Sheriffs Office involving money. Specifically, where certain monies go, since there is no account that that the ECSO has to deposit into, such as a checking account. It is not something that shows up in the official budget. There must be existing records. Simple request, right? This public record should be answered in a matter of minutes. But, because the ECSO is the agency that has the record, it will no doubt be overcomplicated to jack up the “fees” associated with research, or they will simply state “no records exist”. These are the standard 2 answers when a public records request comes in for information, the agency does not want to disclose. Any request that would expose Morgan as the inept law enforcement official he is always is met with unprecedented push-back as well as any request that requires the ECSO to explain where they are hemorrhaging tax dollars will be met with resistance.

In this case, the money being properly unaccounted for is money related to off duty employment. The ECSO has a policy in place that defines what the procedure is for deputies working “off duty” employment. The policy has a minimum amount deputy will be paid. It also has what the deputy must do to be allowed to work “off duty” jobs. One requirement is that a deputy must pay a fee off two dollars an hour back to the ECSO. The ECSO keeps record of how many hours each deputy works each month.  The deputy is then sent a bill that is paid to the ECSO (cash only for a long time, but now they accept debit cards).

This is Accounting 101. Cash is paid to the ECSO and they could easily furnish records about transactions involving a bill and a payment. But how much money does the ECSO collect from the deputies that pay a fee for working off duty each month? Where does the money go after it is collected? Is it considered income for the ECSO? Is there a requirement to report this income to be taxed? Has it been reported? No trick questions there but important questions that require an answer from the ECSO.

Oh, and I have told repeatedly that the ECSO has no duty to answer questions–only provide public records. They “are not inclined to or have the responsibility to” answer questions, according to Chief Deputy Eric Haines. Oddly enough, every other facet of Escambia County government I have dealt with, including the state attorney’s office, is remarkably willing to answer any questions about process and procedure. It is just the ECSO that is not.

And as we know the ECSO has proven that they are not honest with money issues. It may seem as if off-duty money collected is not a substantial amount of money, but for example, Navy Federal Credit Union is a regular off duty job opportunity for the ECSO. Deputies working that job alone have paid over $1500 back to the ECSO. Now consider that Navy Federal is one of hundreds of locations that have deputies throughout the year. The amount of income collected from the deputies for off duty security employment is thousands of dollars each month. This should not be considered insignificant. There is a former Sheriff in prison for misappropriating taxpayer money. The amount of misappropriated funds in the other Sheriff’s case was far less than the funds in question here.

Shouldn’t the media get involved with this issue? We are talking about multiple millions of dollars. Just in the past week, a Grand Jury was not pleased or impressed with how Escambia County handles money issues or oversight of the money grossly mishandled in Century. The dollar amount in question with the ECSO is at least triple the amount of money being questioned in Century. Wouldn’t a grand jury be even more appalled to see the reckless lack of oversight of the ECSO? Is it not a concern of comptroller or county administrator that there is likely (based on the brief preview of the LET fund) mishandling of the amount of money involved here? Accountability about how funds are handled should be everyone’s priority. It is time to ask these questions as well as the questions, others have. If the media is not going to ask questions and hold officials accountable, the citizens must do it.

Look for updates concerning this topic. If anyone decides to make requests or has information about this, please feel free to share with everyone.      

Thoughts on the Recent Promotions from Inside the ECSO

Recently promotions were made at the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office. Congratulations to one that deserved the promotion. Sgt. Tom Kelly was promoted and now Is Lt. Kelly. This IS an actual promotion that should have happen and Lt. Kelly can perform at a level expected by the officers under his command. He will be an example of leadership and professionalism. Many officers will have a chance to observe real supervision, that has become folk lore at the ECSO, for the first time in their career.                    ‘

Now, let’s talk about another– Lt. Frank Forte was promoted to 1st Lt Forte. While Frank will brag as if he had the winning numbers to the Mega PowerBall about this promotion but it is truly lackluster when compared to the other promotions. In fact, anybody should be insulted if they are compared to Forte. He has performed every cut throat task with diligence second to none, except maybe Morgan.  He was passed over for promotion when those promoted had half the years of experience as he does and they were promoted to much higher positions. Because Frank lacks morals and integrity, he was promoted to a position that will allow him to be used. He will carry water for Haines and allow plausible deniability when Haines deploys one of his search and destroy missions. Add the fact that Frank is a documented liar and Haines has the perfect minion for his devious duty assignments. Frank is incompetent, dishonest, and vindictive. All the boxes are checked for what Haines expects from a person running Internal Affairs Investigations.

It could be also that Frank needed to be removed from any position that allowed further destruction of an already weak morale level of current employees. Frank has also been called out for offering rewards for law enforcement activity when assigned to a shift. His failed leadership style reduced him to paying, presumably from his own pocket, and what officers are already hired to do. A law enforcement leader should know that is improper and that process should alert those with decision making authority to look for a problem. A  quick glance would reveal Frank had to bribe officers with gifts to request an assignment to his command and he paid officers extra to simply do their job. This conduct does not have any characteristic of what one would consider a valuable leadership tool.

Now, to another individual that was promoted—Lt. Ken Simmons. He was elevated to the rank of captain. It appears he has begun to reap the rewards of a relative (Chip Simmons -Sheriff candidate and current Chief Deputy) being in high places. His career has been less than notable to this point. He has few qualities that separate him from the pack and a reputation that is less than honorable. No special training, education or accomplishment that would qualify him for advancement ahead of others except for having a brother as Chief Deputy. The obvious question would be if this is a nepotism violation. I believe the law concerning nepotism is clear and this will be a promotion that is reversed in time. Haines would know this but agreed to not fight it so he could avoid being blamed at a future time.

Moving along there are 3 sergeant position that were elevated to captain or above and a  deputy position elevated to captain. One would pause to wonder how you promote sergeants all of whom were inadequate for a lieutenant’s position to a staff position. That is a kick to the teeth of the good officers that earned their position on the list for lieutenants. I assume the message to the ones that took the time to study for a test and dedicate the time to do well is, don’t waste your time and become a member of staff. Apparently, staff is seeking known failures and skipping the process to discover the individuals promoted are failures. This idea of leadership is the reason the ECSO has evolved into an agency that is ineffective and embarrassing to the citizens it serves.

There will be more to report soon. The monster that is known as David Morgan will continue to allow the destruction of the ECSO by the hands of Haines. He will continue to claim victory when placing last and fail to build leaders tasked with protecting our county. If Chip continues to ignore these failures and associate himself with this failed administration, as he has consistently done since taking his oath, he will prove he is not the person we should support for our next law enforcement leader. Some may even believe he is just a continuation of Morgan. The rumors of infidelity could be true and Haines has the relevant information to control Chip. There are few facts to support Chip being worthy of election at this point. There are many facts to cause one to believe he is only an extension of the failed Morgan administration. A brother is promoted, failed first line supervisors brought into the administration, failure to be a leader when deputies’ rightful raises were being extorted, rumors of infidelity being leveraged against Chip, and Chip is silent all the way through it all. That adds up to incompetence or corruption. Chip should either speak up or step away from Morgan. Staying the course he is on, only indicates he is the wrong person for the job.

More BS from Inside the ECSO

The following email was sent to the admin of the ECSO weeks ago; the commentary below is from a source inside the agency after seeing no response by admin.

 

I am aware of the investigation that has started on Col. Custer. I believe that if an investigation is being completed all involved should be part of the investigation. Much of our problems are with the staff members at the office acting one way and judging others when they do the same thing.

All witnesses should be interviewed in the investigation with Col. Custer. This would include Capt. Dixon and her boyfriend Dep. Hall. They had a party at their house for a football game one Thursday night. Col. Custer and Katie were invited and came to the party. They spent the night there after the party. Capt. Dixon and Dep. Hall both knew that happen and allowed it. Capt. Dixon knows Col. Custer’s wife and knows that it was not right to allow two married people spend the night in the home. Both spouses know about this and could verify it is true. If they are not continuing to talk with you there are others. Unless a real effort is placed into this there would be no need to provide that evidence at this time. It would only expose those employees to the likely possibility of losing their job.

This behavior speaks to the lack of values for most of the staff and the double standards that are always displayed. She should not be able to make decisions on our future when she is involved in such poor decisions in her own personal life. Her assistance with allowing an illicit rendezvous to occur jeopardizing two families is deplorable.

Also, Whitney Lucas should be interviewed. Her husband Jake should be allowed to give his thoughts too. If you are wondering how these fits in it is easily explained. Whitney and Katie are best friends. Whitney has been involved in an affair for over two years. Her affair that is continuing is with Chief Simmons. Jake doesn’t want to report the incidents that he knows of because he fears losing his job and causing a divorce with his wife. It is very reasonable to assume he could feel this way when the possibility is Chief Simmons is the next sheriff and he works at the office.

None of the issues with Chief Simmons were going to be brought out at this time because the intent was to expose him closer to the election. The decision was to expose all now because so many families are now involved. This issue goes beyond politics.

Chief Haines knew of this affair that Chief Simmons was having before the recent events. He should be removed from any dealing with any investigations because as he puts it “that money in the bank” and knows he can use it to his advantage. He is constantly involved in these situations and always gets out of it because he is part of the problem.

This information is being provided so the office can clean up the mess we are in. This is the perfect time to remedy many problems. This issue can absolutely be proved provided a legitimate investigation occurs. You will find many other witnesses and evidence if any type of effort is made to find truth.

Commentary by source:

The ECSO is often found at the center of decisions that are questionable at best. There appears to be no consistency in how decisions are made. Discipline is an area that should be consistent. There should be predictable outcome to any issue that has been dealt with in past incidents. The activity of the ECSO administration has routinely acted inconsistent with several issues.

The above email was sent to the ECSO that outlined facts that would concern any reasonable administration. The email was detailed and would allow a mediocre investigator to follow the breadcrumbs to the truth. The information is not what I would believe any citizen would expect from the leaders in the law enforcement community. The details should be investigated, and the truth should be exposed.

What has been proven is there can be no expectation for any investigations to be reliable if conducted by the ECSO. Chief Haines has been proven to be less than honest. He uses his “power” to manipulate lives of those he can control. When he is finished with you he decides of how to discard you. He uses others to do the dirty work and believes that he appears clear of any wrong doing. Those who know him also know that is not true. Chief Haines is always involved but is careful to avoid touching anything that could leave his finger prints. The longer he can do this without having to answer for his actions the more he destroys.

None of the investigations conducted by the ECSO on employees can be trusted to have facts. Chief Haines should not be allowed to control the investigators that conduct internal investigations. The investigation is only a step he uses to prop up his opinion of a person. If he likes you or needs you the investigation will reflect there was no wrongdoing. If he has decided that you are of no use to him the investigation will reflect you should be fired. Having a pre-determined outcome of an investigation is unfair and illegal. Chief Haines has proven he is not capable of being in control of the agency.

This email is an example of how Chief Haines only picks the investigations that benefit him to be investigated. There is not any person in this email that is on his hit list so there will be no action taken on any of this information. No investigator has been tasked with finding the facts surrounding this email. Chief Haines has determined that the email contains no information on a person he has placed on his hit list so there is nothing to investigate. He decided and that is final. However, he will use this email to support a person losing their job if the end up on the hit list.

No complaints should ever be sent to the ECSO to be investigated. They have proven to be bias and untrustworthy.  I would question any and everything from Chief Haines. He  should not even be supervising people at this point. There is far more than a simple preponderance of evidence against him to prove bias concerning his decisions. His career should be reaching conclusion at this point. He has harmed enough people already and future victims deserve to be saved from his tyrannical decisions. His view of people based on his standard and void of any consideration of what is ethical or lawful. Any citizen that has a concern regarding employees should be reported to FDLE. They will send it to the agency for investigation but eventually an issue will pass through and the realization will set in that there is a problem at the ECSO.

The information provided in this email shows an environment that is “do as I say not as I do’ and has no clear rules that apply to all in an equal manner. It gives a glimpse of what the sheriff they have picked for us will be like. As citizens we deserve better representation from those tasked with protecting our county. Chief Haines has fallen short of proving he is a capable leader with values that reflect honorable intentions.   He is a disgrace to the agency as is the leader the non-LEO, David Morgan.

mission statement

RECAP of CURRENT POLITICS IN PENSACOLA, FLORIDA

This post has been difficult to write because I’ve found that so many illegal, improper things keep happening that it is difficult to focus on just one. So this is going to be an overview of where everything stands today.

  1. Doug Underhill vs Alan McMillan

This political race is virtually over.  God seems to have cast His grace on District 2. Polls show McMillan has a strong lead. This particular poll has been historically accurate. Bless God!! Barring any election dabbling, this should be a done deal. The citizens have a chance in this district again. Doug Underhill is a lame duck who will be without his entourage, trolls and bulldog.  No commission seat = no use to your friends.

2.  Eric Haines vs ECSO Deputies

Haines has said in negotiations with PBA that he holds $9 Million and thus he gets anything he wants from deputies. To date, no raises have been given except for the trainees who have a higher rate of pay than the deputies who are compressed.  The compressed deputies is really who the  wanted to help when they gave the first installment of $9 million to the ECSO. But as those of us who recognize the historical significance of the misappropriation of $1.1 million from the LET Fund by Sheriff Morgan, this money was never meant to go to the deputies. As with all the other money effectively stolen by Morgan, this money is going to be used to bolster the few over the help of the many.  Very few of us had anticipated such a move, but leopards do not change their spots and Morgan cannot resist screwing with county money; misappropriation that pays for political capital & favors = embezzlement

Technically, Haines is the one using the money against the deputies. He uses the raises as leverage, eventually, forcing the deputies to relinquish due process rights in their contract with the ECSO. Wow! Causing hardship and only offering relief of that hardship if you sign your life away, sounds fair to me…yeah right!!  Deputies vote this week

3. Chip Simmons vs. ECSO Deputies

Chip, well what can I say? Expectations of you being a Morgan Koolaid Drinker is echoing through the halls of ECSO, in the form of the deafening silence. einstein

Chip, when you took the job you have now, anything good I ever heard about you was confirmed to be BS. No person with any integrity would have nothing to do with the shit show that is the ECSO.  Deputies have told me on numerous occasions that the damage the Morgan/Haines administration has done to the community will take YEARS to repair.  They have eliminated multiple generations of good cops, leaving behind the ones who turn a blind eye to what is happening internally, but not having the balls to speak out because they need a job.  Really?  Is a job worth your soul?  I digress. The ones left are not trying to strengthen bond with citizens, or even with other deputies. Dividing the allegiances of the employees is the way to keep the crew from rising up or together.

Point of this post….Morgan conned the BOCC and embezzled/misappropriated $9 million, just because the deputies choose to keep their rights…amazing.

Chip, the Savior, is doing nothing. Hey Chip, one of the options that has been bantered is how about you boycotting that shit show as way of showing support for the deputies….just don’t come in until the issue of raises is properly handled. Or how about this, you could quit because by staying you ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM. You have 1 or 2 retirements to fall back on….But hey, there’s  ABSOLUTELY nothing you can do, right??

 

 

 

Corruption = Liberty & Justice for ….the Favored

Recently, there has been article after article about the corruption of the law enforcement agencies in the area. The attention was, at first, on the employees that were wronged, which is reasonable because those individuals are the most obvious victims of the corruption. When an employee is wrongly terminated, the process demands the employee to, ultimately, seek a court action to remedy the wrong. A court action is all that most people ever see.  The events that happen up until the filing of a suit, all the behind the scenes, or “the real cause”, is seldom known.  The public has not seen the battles or the battle scars, that nexus of the issue, or what lead to the “law enforcement gods” to eviscerate the rights of, in this case, their employees.

In each one of these cases, that are known, information provided by public records is the only understanding available to the general public.  If all the stars and planets are aligned, articles are written, using those documents, can explain the meaning of the records exposed. These articles and documents typically support the idea of poor leadership existing in the law enforcement community in Escambia County.

It is a common theme to see Sir David and his loyal followers act more as tyrannical dictators than public servants. The layperson would observe that free speech, employment rights, and laws, in general, are only rights reserved for the favored ones outside of the agency. Sir David wouldn’t consider applying those laws to his or his cronies’ actions.  His leadership proves that it is best to do what he says and ignore the rules. Rules do not concern him and are used to attack him improperly because after all he is David Morgan.

In Escambia County, Sir David has been seen allowing two favored employees to violate state law as the staff attempts to ignore it. Colleen Burt and Jessica Hackathorn, both committed law violations and their incidents were compared to past incidents showing that unfavored ECSO employees were punished for the same type of acts. Fortunately, they have been exposed and now, everyone is waiting for the reports of what action will be taken, if any.  Based on the patterns of behavior demonstrated over and over, the ECSO staff will drag out a simple investigation, hoping for the everyone who is watching to become distracted and not notice when that overt action is taken to put the “fix” in, to resolve the matter most favorable to the agency—not the law or the community but the agency.  It would be prudent for the ones guilty of overriding policies, laws and ethical codes to remember that because of the past issues handled inappropriately, attention to them will increase as they have been identified as corrupt.  This is something most people subverting the law might be cognizant of, however, arrogance is the biggest enemy to any criminal. And these criminals think they are ABOVE the law.

Still, even with those cases (or best described as crimes), many of the other incidents involved normal everyday citizens that are not aware of how to expose law enforcement corruption. Some may even be intimidated by the perception of power those such as Sir David possess. The citizens forget, just as Sir David did, that they are source of elected power and it is with them the actual power exists. Sure, it is a tough battle but what has worth, that isn’t worth a fight? It is not difficult for Morgan to destroy individuals in a battle. With cowards, such as Haines, paying his debt to Morgan, for boosting him well beyond his actual capability of a law enforcement officer nothing is off the table. Morgan easily motivates those lacking integrity to do the dirty work. Even if the staff doesn’t participate directly, they have no issue with watching the henchmen destroy, or attempt to destroy good people. This may even be worse than participating. At least, Haines knows he must jump when Morgan says to jump. This forces him to put in some effort and could even cause him to perceive he is doing his job in some insane thought process. Those, who watch, are not willing to act but see no problem in ignoring anything that doesn’t affect them directly. Would it be regarded as acceptable for a cop to watch a person get robbed by a suspect but not get involved because of fear of being harmed? Of course not, but that is exactly what ECSO staff does.

Another issue has been exposed recently. The Brady List. This is a list that has clear guidelines concerning the conduct that would cause an officer to be placed on the list. By reading the list, with information provided by ECSO, there is no indication of what criteria these officers have met to be on the list, nor to determine what that process is. The only real common denominator is that all on the list are disliked by Morgan and/or Haines. After reading the case law concerning Brady several times, it is worth mentioning that there is not one mention of anything that allows Morgan or Haines the sole discretion to place whoever they wanted on the list.

ECSO can’t say that all people who commit a policy violation of any kind should be on the list. Many have committed violations that were not indicative of their trustworthiness as an officer of the law.  It would be impossible to say all employees that are terminated are on the list. There was an occasion that a colonel was terminated and not listed. Maybe because Haines was fearful of the repercussion because of a lawsuit pending. However, if it is legal to put others on the list, why would he be scared to put that employee on there too?

A recent demotion occurred to an employee–a lieutenant, was busted to deputy. Two full ranks in the chain of command. Why does Haines think that wasn’t reasonable for that person to be on the list? Remember Burt? She was found to have lied on her timesheet and received discipline for lying.  This employee is exactly an employee that qualifies for the list. She could testify in a criminal proceeding about evidence and has proven to have questionable credibility by lying on a timesheet. If she would lie about work hours, it would be reasonable to be concerned she might lie about important issues that could have adverse effect on someone’s future in court. Now Hackathorn also has an issue too. She could be called to give testimony concerning officers committing insurance fraud or in at least, in one case, complain about it. She, then, is given a free pass when she commits fraud with a clear intent of a planned theft of services from the insurance company.

The truth is Morgan and Haines should be on the list. They routinely act in a manner that causes their character to be questioned. They act as if ruining the careers of others is a hobby. No hesitation to ruin lives when it betters the position for them. David Morgan was given proof of Lt. Forte committing perjury and ignored the complaint. The fact an official complaint of perjury was filed should have landed Forte on the list. This is a typical example of Morgan and Haines playing favorites. With a certified court transcript in hand, to compare to a statement under oath to internal affairs by Forte clearly lying, he is found not to have committed any policy violation even. It is often said that anyone can have their own opinion but not their own facts. It is clear the Brady List provided by the ECSO has undermined a check and balance process to help make certain law enforcement officers can be held to a standard that cultivates trust. Morgan and Haines made the choice to use it as a tool to punish those identified as enemies, further pushing public trust away from the good cops in our community.

Takeaway from this article:

Wrong is always wrong; right is always right. If one person is persecuted by  someone using a law or policy as a weapon, any person may be persecuted the same way. Corruption is equal opportunity with no one being safe.

banksy

How Many BJ’s for This?

colleen burt

I was shocked that THIS crime scene tech was actually applauded for this award, while no other such awards have been recognized with the same fanfare. But I suppose it should not have been such a surprise being that LEO AFFAIRS posts have been deleted about the open talk of the “oral” gratification this woman provides at crime scenes and the fact her nipple rings can be identified in a line up, Eric the social media Nazi, probably has sampled her talents.  While the one LEO AFFAIRS post addresses her by name, Escambia, & Santa Rosa reference her.

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Escambia LEO Affairs post

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Santa Rosa LEO Affairs

While the number of BJ’s given for the attention by Chief Deputy Nonsense is in question, the real question is why Colleen did not get the opportunity to go to jail for leaving her gun in the women’s restroom? James Higdon was burned at the stake for that but yet there is NO documentation on Ms. Crime Scene Nipple Ring, why?

Attached is the IA on Higdon, if anyone has any info on “lady” referenced here, please let me know.

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Big Fat Liar!

Eric Haines must have a bet with someone about how many lies he can cram into a certain time frame. Last weekend, I got a copy of an email from internally in the ECSO. It was sent 3/16/18 at 4:41 pm. Literally, the last minute of the business week. It reads:

Sat Mar 17 2018 18_45_31 GMT-0500Sat Mar 17 2018 18_44_42 GMT-0500

I received this and immediately asked Commissioner Jeff Bergosh what fell apart. He had no idea Haines had sent this email, nor was he ever contacted to say that something was wrong. The BOCC ratified and signed an agreement sent to them by Haines and Champagne. Nothing was changed after that. There is even proof in this PNJ article:

Escambia County and Sheriff David Morgan reach preliminary budget agreement

LINKEDIN 3COMMENTMORE

Five months after Sheriff David Morgan appealed his budget to Gov. Rick Scott’s office, the Escambia County Commission has voted 3-2 on a preliminary budget settlement.

The budget settlement is a four-year agreement that will implement a pay plan for deputies that will increase the sheriff’s budget by $1 million this year and pay the Sheriff’s Office $2.6 million each year for the next two years. The final year of the agreement would provide the Sheriff’s Office with $2.9 million

Morgan filed an appeal in October to the governor’s office asking for more than $2 million in additional funds for the 2017-2018 fiscal year to address pay compression issues that he said are causing his office to lose deputies faster than they can be replaced.

Funding for the agreement will come from cuts to outside agencies. Funding for outside agencies, except for Pathways for Change and Community Health Northwest Florida, will be cut by 50 percent. An additional $125,000 will come each year from the commissioners’ discretionary fund, which represents a reduction of 50 percent to discretionary funds.

The commission voted on the mediation agreement after a closed-door, attorney-client session Thursday morning.

The agreement will still have to be ratified with an formal interlocal agreement between the Sheriff’s Office and the county. The changes to the budget will also have to be approved with budget amendment votes.

“We are encouraged by the progress to properly compensate our deputies,” ECSO Chief Deputy Eric Haines said to the News Journal in a written statement. “Until the final agreement is signed by the BOCC, we feel it is inappropriate to discuss the details of the settlement.”

Commissioner Lumon May wanted to postpone the vote until it was clear how much each outside agency would lose in funding. He added 30 minutes was not enough time to debate a measure that would commit millions of dollars.

A list of 16 outside agencies was attached to the mediation agreement. The list included groups from the Pensacola-Escambia Economic Development Commission to United Way. The agencies were allocated a total of $1.3 million from the county, but it was unclear how much funding, if any, each agency could lose.

According to the county’s adopted budget, the county allocated $1.68 million to outside agencies.

The agreement limits funding for outside agencies in future years to $734,374.

May asked County Attorney Alison Rogers if the attached list was the complete list of affected outside agencies, and she said she did not know.

“That’s valid enough to postpone this vote, Mr. Chairman,” May said. “For the record, your legal counsel has told you, she’s not clear on it, but you’re still going to vote on it.”

Commission Chairman Jeff Bergosh said the agreement is a step forward but will require tough decisions.

“None of this is easy, and there’s a give and a take,” Bergosh said.

Commissioner Steven Barry said the agreement removes the right of the board to set the county’s budget and he was concerned about the language dealing with the law enforcement trust fund.

“The language referencing the LETF funds says ‘if possible’ and ‘when feasible,'” Barry said. “That’s a win on a relatively small dollar amount per year. We’re giving somebody else the authority to not just fund them, but to have another constitutional (officer) to have direct control over the way that we prepare the budget.”

The law enforcement trust fund is made up of money seized by police from suspected criminal activity and can vary in amount from year to year. In the last three years, the balance has swung from $342,000 to $746,000.

Commissioner Grover Robinson said he would do everything he could to support continuing to fund outside agencies any way he could.

“This is an agreement that moves us forward,” Robinson said. “Nothing happens until we have a final document here. I think there is merit in us moving this forward and still evaluating where we go. I think the people want to see us trying to negotiate through this. I don’t disagree, gentleman, with what y’all have problems with in here.”

Commissioner Doug Underhill said the board showed leadership by cutting their discretionary funds, but said he expected commissioners to get calls from the outside agencies facing cuts.

“The only answer to that is, is your budget more important than public safety in Escambia County, and obviously the answer to that is going to be no,” Underhill said. “Most of them will recognize that these are tight times, and we’re tightening our belts.”

Underhill said the only other option was to raise taxes, which, he said, nobody wants.

“We are moving away from that kind of personality-based politics and more toward policy and procedure-based governance,” Underhill said. “It took a lot of courage. I’m in a campaign this year, and so is Grover. And both of us voted for something that’s going to be unpopular with a lot of people. I think that says a lot for the type of government we have now here in Escambia County.”

Jim Little can be reached at jwlittle@pnj.com and 850-208-9827.

Even Underling leaves the table saying this is resolved to both sides satisfaction. Haines, Underhill, Champagne aka Team Morgan are all fine, but when it comes times for Hefe Morgan to sign on the dotted line after his representatives, Jack Brown, Alison Rogers and the commissioners, he refuses to sign.

An internal source at the ECSO claims Morgan never agreed to the 50% of the LET funds going towards SRO’s. That was the deal breaker. However, Haines goes to painstaking, agonizing levels to say that it was all these other issues in a video he does this past week full of charts. He goes on a 30 minute diatribe of how the county wants to “SCREW” the deputies. One absolutely false statement was that Henrique Dias was part of the negotiations leading up to the signing of the Interlocal Agreement. Henrique Dias has not been at work, or in Pensacola even for at least 6 weeks. Why would he chime in yet his name never appear anywhere at the 11th hour but not resume his duties as the CFO in this arrangement?  After all, Haines only took this position in negotiating because Dias was MIA.  He would be the one to argue the numbers being that he is the CFO and the Svengali of this chaos.

Putting aside the absolute ridiculousness & lies of this video, Rick Outzen even points out in an article titled “Is the BCC-ECSO Mediation Agreement Binding?”,

…However, the question is the mediation agreement binding. The mediation agreement only had one contingency -“3) This Agreement is contingent upon approval by the Board of County Commissioners.”

Outzen had another article in which he quoted Amber Southard as saying, “the mediation is a two-phase process that the ECSO considers the mediation agreement an ‘agreement in principal’ and  ‘then the Interlocal agreement is definitive.'”

This is the press release from Hefe Morgan on the 19th,

“The attempt to resolve the budget appeal through mediation appears to have been unsuccessful.

“Based on communication after the mediation, the BOCC staff wants to include any future contributions or cost increases to Worker’s Compensation, Unemployment Compensation, Florida Retirement System, and Health Care, as part of what was agreed to as a salary fix.

“The BOCC will be free to increase their own subsidies and the other constitutional officer’s subsidies over the next three years while keeping the Sheriff’s Office at current levels. There would be no way to project what an employee’s salary would be in three years if subsidy increases have to come out of the salary dollars.

“We cannot go into the details of the mediation per a confidentiality agreement. More work was to be done to flesh out the details of the Mediation Settlement as evidenced the BOCC’s County Attorney (who was present during the mediation) drafting a more detailed Interlocal Agreement that was sent to us last week for review and input. There now seems to be some internal conflict between the Commissioners concerning the agreement.

“In addition, the BOCC is now attempting to unilaterally define the Mediation Settlement by casting aside the more detailed draft Interlocal Agreement. We asked the BOCC to join a conference call with the mediator on Friday to clarify the issues. They declined.

“If the Commissioners are now being told that the mediation settlement was always meant to be the final language in the Interlocal Agreement, we would encourage them to individually and directly contact the mediator for clarification of that point.

“We will not accept any settlement that prevents the full implementation of the salary study or fails to correct the gross underfunding of ECSO salaries. We are fully confident that when the facts are presented to the Governor that he will decide in the ECSO’s favor.

“We are attaching the working copy of the Interlocal Agreement that was abandoned by the BOCC. Their initial draft is in black. Our additions and clarifications are in red.”

Everything points to everyone except Morgan on the same page until Friday afternoon. If the reasons they point out were not the REAL issues as all indicators suggest (no balking up until the last minute),  what could be the reason?  Again internally, it is said to be the LET caveat. Morgan doesn’t want his promised political money touched. That seems to be the best explanation offered.

On Friday,  Jeff Bergosh posted on his blog a story that illustrates the facts of what happened concisely. It reads (along with comments):

Haggling over that Brand New Truck…..

What would you think of a dealership that, after haggling back and forth over price with you and agreeing to a $50,000.00 “out the door” deal for your new truck–tried to change the price back to $54,999.99 at document signing???

The Dealership wants the absolute top-dollar for the shiny brand new truck.

The customer realizes the value of the truck, likes the product, does his research, does his homework, figures out what a fair price is, and he goes to the dealership–because he needs a new truck.

The buyer arrives on the lot and spots the brand-new, fire-engine red full-sized pickup he wants.  Shortly thereafter, a salesman arrives.

The buyer takes a test drive, looks the truck up and down, and looks at the sticker knowing he cannot and will not pay that full retail cost of $55,000.00–because that price is an inflated price and other dealerships have sold similar trucks for around $50,000.00.

“Are you willing to make a deal on this truck–are you the decider on the price?”  the buyer asks.

“Absolutely–make me an offer!”  says the salesman.

“I’ll give you $45,000.00  total today–in cash, out the door” says the buyer.

“Okay, I’ll see if I can go that low, I’ll go run some numbers with the sales manager” The salesman states.  A few minutes later, the salesman returns, and he looks the buyer in the eyes and says “We can’t go $45,000.00–but we can make a deal at $50,000.00.”

“Out the door?” asks the buyer

“Out the door” states the salesman

“You’ve got a deal–$50,000.00 out the door!” says the buyer.  As the salesman and the buyer exchange a firm handshake and look each other in the eye, the buyer says “I’m going home to get the cash, my wife will have to approve this but she wants this truck more than I do, so you have a deal!”  Excitedly the buyer heads home to get the $50K.  On the way out the door, he calls out to the salesman “Get it prepped and gassed I’ll be back in half an hour!”

Upon his return, with his wife and a shoebox full of $100.00 dollar bills totalling $50,000.00 in tow–the salesman ushers the couple into a cramped cubicle….

“Here’s the $50k, where do I sign?” asks the buyer.

“Okay, well about that deal………our finance guy has been out for awhile, and the manager has overruled my deal–you see, we need to charge you for tag, title, fees, underbody rust protection, gap insurance, roadside assistance and also the dealer prep fees”

“Okay–I get that” says the buyer–“Subtract that out of the total and balance the deal at $50,000.00–because we made a deal–$50,000.00 cash out the door—we shook on that!”

“I’m sorry sir, the manager told me to tell you NO” said the salesman looking down, not making eye-contact…. “but here is some good news–once we add in the items I’ve been told MUST be added back, your new total price is only…..$54,999.99″  Now, do you want to start re-negotiating, I can go get my manager, we can take all that cash and work out some new terms for the difference……”

“Wow–are you serious?!?”  Says the buyer.  “I don’t want to re-negotiate, I want this truck for the price you and I agreed on and shook on–because that is the honorable way to negotiate!”

“I’m sorry sir,  the manager won’t let me honor our deal” says the salesman looking straight down at the floor.  “I’m really sorry…”

“You ARE SORRY, and Your dealership IS SORRY!” says the buyer

8 comments:

Eric Haines said…

To continue the story, the salesman, who had been burned by this customer before, was smart enough to have had the conversation in front of an independent third party who could, through a phone call, confirm that the agreed upon price specifically didn’t include the tax, tag, title, and insurance and that those issues were to be worked out in the finance officer’s office. He also had another, more informed, more influential buyer in Tallahassee, that in a few short months would likely buy the truck for full price on a payment plan. In addition, the truck was necessary to provide vital services to the public and should have been purchased years ago. Only a year ago the buyer had said he had no money at all for a truck and would for 2 years, but now, 9 months later, he had $50k to buy a truck.

The buyer was pretty upset when he later found out that the salesman had in actuality only been looking at the floor in disappointment at the predictability of the customer. He immediately held his head high and called the customer in Tallahassee as he could care less what this local customer thought about him. He knew that the customer’s Yelp reviews were rarely looked at in high esteem as they were usually twisted and exaggerated.

Jimmie Lee Staley said…

And that Chief Deputy Nonsense, is Nonsense. This stage is open for all to see. Your agency’s actions don’t jive with your words. You cannot change that. What was said and what was done are left to history. No spin from you or Hefe Morgan is going to make this look like anything but what it was….re-neg. Pure and simple…

Anonymous said…

I love the stories. Why don’t you just go to the Governor anyway?

Anonymous said…

I guess this is inside baseball. Though it is quite funny. My take on this is this, So there is a deal, but the owner (Mr. Dupe the Welsh) of the dealership had cold feet and the salesman really did not have authority to sign the contract, so Dupe the Welsh, well, Welshed. And Dupe the Welsh thinks his daddy, who owns another, bigger dealership in Tallahassee, is going to buy the truck at full retail with Uncle Sam III’s money. Unfortunately for Dupe the Welsh, everybody knows how much he hoodwinks and fleeces everyone as his dealership falls apart. Even Tallahassee daddy knows Dupe the Welsh is a con and refuses to reward Dupe the Welsh, well, for his welsh and doesn’t buy the truck. Tallahassee daddy tells Dupe the Welsh to keep the truck and try to sell it next year. Of course, everyone hates Dupe the Welsh, especially all of his beleaguered salesmen who missed out on additional salaries from the signed deal Dupe the Welsh, well, welshed. Dupe the Welsh, who is getting long in the tooth, retires and only one year later, no one remembers him, ever. A new owner comes to power, one who is reasonable, a former salesman and mentally stable who keeps his word. The dealership thrives, car sales increase, car salesmen make money and the world returns to normal.

Anonymous said…

I don’t know why anyone is surprised about this at all. This is Haines and Morgan’s MO. They mislead the public with fake data and string along the employees with visions of grandeur that never happen. This moronic response from the Chief Deputy of a large law enforcement agency should enlighten the public to the toxic style of leadership running the Sheriff’s Office. I have tried to approach this with an open mind, but when one side sends in the incompetent second string to negotiate knowing it would be rejected, I can only shake my head in dismay. In a radio interview Haines said the county had duped them before, well I remember the jail negotiations so the Sheriff seems to be leading in that category now. The Sheriff needs to stop bullying his way to Tallahassee and grow a set. Negotiate in good faith and do the right thing for the deputies. If the Governor sides for the Sheriff now after receiving an offer of $9 Mil over three or four years, then we are all in trouble because Morgan is unstoppable. For God sake don’t let Haines talk for you. Oh yes and Jeff, you really need to tone it down. It is obvious that the issue you are most vocal about are personal and not for the good of the public.

Anonymous said…

I have tried to have an open mind also. I think it boils down to most on the BCC think the sheriff could have given raises with his budget as it was. Perhaps, because the position of sheriff is a direct constitutional officer it is not good practice in Florida since there are really not the correct checks and balances of power like the board, although that is definitely a struggle for funds there also. I think with social media as it is, things have changed as far as the original intent of secret ballots, representative democracy and honoring the system. People always disagreed in the past and the vote was a balance of power with out all the haggling and discussion. The vote was done and it was over, end of deal. Perhaps the idea of a having the board go through a Public Information Officer and release things to a respected press would be better all in all for the board. Look at Facebook..What a disaster..politics and government all co mingled. Unsavory at times..

Anonymous said…

Anonymous10:42 Hopefully the baseball fans of Dupe the Welsh are left standing there looking stupid and wondering why everybody else saw this and bet on the other teams and they were left holding the ball. But you are probably right the new former sales man will come along and soon most will all be eating peanuts and cracker jacks in the stands again. But some good may have come out of watching the game. Time wounds all heels.

Anonymous said…

How were you duped? Sounds to me like you overloaded your arrogant backside. How can you and the Sheriffs Attorney sign the document after sitting through negotiates, leave the meeting and then cry that you were duped ? Appears to me you went back to your boss with the done deal and he didn’t like the deal you made. In order to save face with your boss and the employees you had to cry “they duped us” . You and the Attorney need to be replaced.

I think that says it all.  Morgan backed out because his minions didn’t get it right.  What a good leader? Why wasn’t he involve in the drafting of the Interlocal Agreement? Arrogance? Or was he and he was asleep at the wheel?

Presidential Insubordination

LEO’s want to be heard!

This came to me today.

Recently, there has been conversation about President Trump visiting our hometown. Having the POTUS visit your home is a big deal. It has always been considered an honor to be involved in the detail that provides security to the leader of the free world. It is an operation that law enforcement officers consider a privilege. It is a chance to be a part of something that is memorable and honorable. Not many people in the world can be tasked with the responsibility of protecting POTUS.

However, this visit is a bit different than the times I have experienced in the past. The President had been scheduled to visit Pensacola. The typical discussions would take place and plans made to give each agency the details of responsibility. All the law enforcement agencies would begin to plan as needed. The officers would be scheduled, and the plan would start to take form. Then……enter Morgan.

Even a self-mined political hack like Sir David Morgan would be reasonable enough to understand that this event is bigger than he is. If that was the conclusion you reached, you would be wrong. In fact, it would be absolute opposite of that conclusion. Morgan is the fly in the ointment again! This fool can avoid seeing that POTUS is coming to Pensacola for a purpose–a purpose that is likely to advance the agenda that he holds to improve the life of all Americans. When the self-absorbed sheriff can ignore that the President and turn the event into being about himself, it is a BIG DEAL!

Morgan made the decision to negotiate the terms that he will allow officers to provide protection to POTUS. In this mind-blowing thought process, he believed that he should sing the anthem and be provided time to address the audience. I know…. right?  None of this included considering law enforcement function, which would have been the intent of the detail nor any thought of how best to accomplish the mutual agency cooperation and goals that are already in place. No consideration was given to better work with the Secret Service for a successful event. This fool believed he had the right to demand payoff for simply doing his job. He essentially is attempted to be paid with favors for being the Sheriff and tried to extort the President. This man never fails to shock the community with his ignorance.

This circus act is just another day at the office. Cops realize that it isn’t a joke to be viewed as fools. It makes me sick to my stomach to watch the agency fall into the shame of the everyone because of egos. Morgan has recently admitted under oath that he isn’t a certified law enforcement officer. So why when he makes a mockery of an agency that –until his arrival— had respect from the community, does nothing get reported except in independent blogs?  He routinely allows or ignores the hate spewing attacks of Eric Haines to be allowed in any public forum. There appears to be no expectation of honesty being that Haines reported the ECSO was involved just like past Presidential details. This is an absolute lie. We were made aware after investigations was told they were not needed. The understanding that most have is a couple of staff members showed up and 6 or 8 from SWAT members were at the hotel.  Really Eric? I find it appalling that you can judge others so vocally and lie publicly. Pathetic and predictable.

Please don’t allow “The Diva” some call Sheriff to cause the officers to be viewed as the same mental midget that Morgan is.  Good cops want to do the right thing. The public only sees the antics of a man-child playing dress up. All his underlings have exceeded any expectation they, or anyone else, had for their life. His staff proves that a history of beating your spouse or shooting at your spouse is somehow useful experience. You can be a drunk and sleep with coworkers. Avoid following the path of testing and proving you are qualified. Vacate any of the integrity that you could have. Disregard that one day your child could discover you were a fake and stood for nothing. Completely bow to the honor of being blessed with the presence of Sir David Morgan. That is how you survive the Morgan administration. The cops haven’t done that. Cops are still the guys and girls in the patrol cars patrolling your neighborhoods while you sleep. The same ones that hold their head not so high. They feel the embarrassment for a man who would never be embarrassed because he doesn’t know what to be embarrassed about. He is certain that the way he does business is exactly like Miami Vice, but the cops with day to day contact with the public do know to be embarrassed. They have integrity and can spot a fraud.  Morgan should realize that real cops will stay the course. In the end, he is exposed and the cops win.

We owe President Trump an apology. I hope he understands that Pensacola is a great place to call home. We appreciate him noticing our home and taking time to visit. Our law enforcement would proudly perform the duties as expected when he visits. President Trump would understand we have our own swamp to drain. Soon I hope we see a change for the better and changes come. I think with that clown posse out of the ECSO we can get back to being proud of our home.

 

 

Sheriff Morgan: It’s OK for Deputies & Daughters Get Their Groove On

traffickingMedium2 For a small community, Escambia County has more than its share of sex issues. Recently, 2 EMT’s (Doug & Leah Manning) were charged with sexual assault and child abuse for offering their teenage daughters to sleep with Escambia County Sheriff Deputies. Two men were videotaped with the 16 year old twin girls who were the kids of Leah Manning. The deputies were Walter Thomas & Mark Smith–both 40+ years old– and are only named specifically because of aforementioned video on a cell phone. The disturbing part of this situation is threefold; 1. How many other deputies sexually assaulted these girls who were not necessarily recorded? 2. How many other teenagers in these girls’ clique may be involved? 3. Why isn’t the Sheriff’s Department actually investigating this OR rather why isn’t a less corrupt agency investigating this? Do bad kids usually punish themselves?

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Mark Smith

I have part of an answer. Despite the fact there could be additional sex offenders with badges slapping cuffs on with one hand and slapping asses with the other or more kids that were molested by the men in green, the Sheriff is playing CYA (Cover Your Ass). Truth be told, the “free love” lifestyle is rampant among the Escambia County Sheriff’s office. Sir David is believed to participate in “free love” as well as Rick Outzen, his puppet, who pulled a major political favor out of Morgan by having his girlfriend given a fictitious job upon Morgan’s election as Sheriff. David Craig, Major, Community Policing Coordinator, Communications Director (depending on the day) was also bestowed a job within the Sheriff’s office as a condition of Morgan’s election.

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(Damn, I never noticed but they could be brothers!) Surrounded by people indebted to the him, unwilling to live up to their assumed responsibility as well as deputies acting like gerbils crawling all over each other, Sir David doesn’t want his office to look bad.  Who would want all this to come out? Definitely not Outzen—his wife and kids don’t know what kind of kink he has in his step. Certainly not the people who are inservitude to Sir David.  Absolutely not the people who are screwing each other as well each others’ children. We could take it to the Chief Deputy who is a man of God, right?  Holier than though Haines seems inclined to watch Sodom & Gomorrah burn, while he standing by idly. He sees the sins and the sinners but chooses to do nothing to stand up for his supposed values and God. Praise the Lord and pass the popcorn. IMG_3335-1024x768 Should we turn to FDLE, who composed of ex-deputies with buddies involved? Should we look to federal intervention in a region where a criminal informant is given carte blanche to kill while everyone covers it up? Like that really matters in light of a Sheriff who pronounces a “death sentence” over anybody that comes forward. To clarify, “you will wish you were dead if you speak outside this office”. IMG_20150404_185524-1 Justice at work people. Who is next on the victim list? Maybe you? Maybe your children? Don’t let these people walk free in your community. If deputies are so sexually liberated to speak openly about their lifestyle in the workplace, it makes sense that they are prioritizing their pleasure over their responsibility. How many on duty deputies rotated in and out of the Manning house? Last count was 10-15. THIS IS NOT OK. There are reasons for ethical codes for peace officers. They are morally held to a standard that we should all live at. Yet they have the ability to commit the vilest of crimes without word one in the news. C’mon!  In the Billings’ case, every detail and piece of evidence was dumped into the public and pictures were released to get press. Where are those cameras now? Why isn’t someone hounding the Sheriff to keep the public apprised of the further investigation in sexual depravity and molestation in his own HOUSE?

Eric Haines: Three Commissioners Voted Funding for FULL ECSO Budget

Over the last couple of weeks, despite the Escambia Citizens Watch rhetoric & short video rants by Sir David, employees (EMPLOYED by ECSO) claim that Chief Deputy Nonsense (Haines) has been heard telling people the “fix” is in. Differing sources have heard Haines touting that they have the necessary 3 votes to approve the budget for the ECSO. This has been since the BOCC voted down the millage increase.

I spoke to Commissioner Jeff Bergosh regarding this. His quote was this:

“We are working to solve the budget issue, and there is not any certain deal or fix of which I am aware that has been reached. We will solve this issue the night of the budget meeting, September 12th or at some point before that at a PUBLIC meeting. I have attempted to meet face to face with Sheriff Morgan and have requested a face to face meeting about the budget four times in writing and I have been told no or the request has been ignored”


BOTTOM LINE: Chief Deputy Nonsense (Haines) is either a blatant liar or he is admitting to corruption that he is personally a party to. The BOCC may want to address this with Chief Deputy Nonsense because the history of corruption in Escambia County may persuade the powers that be to sacrifice this someone over this prior to a scandal. Chief Deputy Nonsense willingly walked up to the alter dragging the county commission with him. While I would say that no better man deserves such an end, I would rather see Sir David walking into a 10×6 cell, but hey, this could be just a start.

Can’t wait to see what happens now.

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