by Marion Marks
Since the last Board of Control meeting, a small group of citizens has requested a number of PRR responses to evaluate in response to the library board and executive handling of the Sunshine Forum and other issues under scrutiny. SML has addressed these matters by shuffling staff at least three times that we can tell, and has chosen a path of destroying records and communicating in a manner of secrecy we believe to be consistent with a pattern of deliberately refusing to follow regulations a public organization must follow. We believe the majority of the board is not aware of many of these issues, but because of the board actions at the last meeting we must assume they approve of them. Specific discriminatory policies of the administration against minority and non-minority employees have been rampant because of overt and covert actions of the administration.
The public has been asked to believe that “the Shreve Memorial Library Board of Control ALWAYS approves all library programs and diversity of programs and participants is a requirement for ALL.” Public Records Requests prove this is not evident in any policy or procedure of the library and certainly it has not been evident in any programs except the Sunshine Forum. We again publicly ask that whatever policy or procedure exists concerning this be produced and the date and amendments of such document be included.
HR (Human Resource) decisions and practices of SML are difficult for an outsider to understand, however I believe that Director Heezen received emails from elected officials requesting that he select specific candidates for positions, most recently with regard to SML’s paid internship program. Heezen has forwarded these messages to staff, who in turns forwards them to the respective Branch managers, in an attempt to not-so-subtly indicate that their hiring choices aren’t really their own. I demand that the public be shown exactly what communications Heezen and staff are having with and concerning elected officials. All documents and communication is hereby publicly requested in this matter.
Heezen and his staff continue efforts to have the “Public Records requirements” removed, reorganized, or hidden on the new organization of staff. SML is consistently working to violate the public’s trust.
The Staff “reorganization” since the last board meeting appears to establish a pattern of disciplinary harassment and dangerous disregard for professional standards that a library or public entity should meet. EOE requirements appear to be violated either in spirit or letter and even the library’s own policies for personnel have been trampled through manipulative shuffling and redefining of jobs and responsibilities. It is hereby requested that all documents regarding staff organization since the last board meeting, including emails, postings or suggestions be provided.
The board has been kept both out of touch and neglected of administrative actions in personnel reassignments that even casual observers see that professionalism takes a back seat to cronyism and political manipulation as the management chart becomes a chess board power struggle. It is hereby requested that all communications with the board regarding staff and responsibility realignment be provided.
Catherine Beaird’s move out of the library has allowed the director to “reorganize” in a manner he cannot explain or support as salaries and responsibilities have been arbitrarily manipulated to violate established seniority guidelines and standards. It is hereby requested that all communication, allowed and approved by Catherine a beard be produced that relate to staff realignment.
I demand an audit and public justification for the administrative failures of both the board and administration in violating the public’s trust in the manner is which staff have been mistreated by recent manipulations and organization. I contend that records will indicate that gross mismanagement exists and there has been a conspiracy to hide the intent of the board and staff to not follow stablished guidelines regarding personnel.
I publicly demand that all paperwork be produced by the director his staff and the board regarding recent staff reorganization, including the various stages and shuffling that has resulted in the current organizational chart of the library. Emails, both internal staff and external, regarding personnel appointments and organization must be produced. I believe there has been a pattern resulting in the deletion of most incriminating documents.
I believe it can be shown that a pattern of intentional discrimination can be demonstrated and the administration and board should all be required to step back while a full investigation is launched by an independent body.
Until an independent audit either confirms the status quo or demonstrates improprieties, this board lacks the trust to proceed. As of today, it is my contention that the board has and continues to take actions in violation of public laws and trust. Until an independent analysis is concluded regarding these questions, I suggest that no further changes in staff of assignments are proper or responsible.