What I am about to say will be unpopular with the animal community, but I say it because I am afraid for the animals, given how close we are to getting rid of Boks.
What if we get someone worse than Boks? Imagine the horror if we got another Mayeda or Mayeda herself? Villaraigosa has shown a remarkable ability to ignore the LA animal community and has even considered the possibility of asking Mayeda to replace Stuckey.
I think the overwhelming consensus of our community is to bring in Winograd to consult and help pick a successor as he did in Philly when he picked Tara Derby and within seven months cut killing in half. This would be my choice too.
But it is obvious from a previous insider commenter that Villaraigosa will ignore the community on this tactic to reach no kill; he will pick another Bozo with immaculate shelter credentials; no doubt about that. Tony has no imagination; he only wants to play safe to protect his reputation.
I have read most of Redemption now and it is clear that Boks has tried to implement most of Winograd’s recommendations, but to no avail. He has not and likely cannot. Council, civil service and the union have blocked his attempts to reform, he keeps tripping on his tongue, lies far too much, and pretends no-kill is here even with a 46% death rate.
For example, Nathan recommends a comprehensive TNR program. However, just to make that a city policy, LAAS has had to perform a CEQA study of the effects of such a program in order to convince Council to make TNR the City’s policy. This has been going on for well over a year with no end in sight. There is a lot of opposition from many environmental groups that have their own, contrary goals.
A Winograd successor would be faced with the same obstacles. Nathan, Friedman and Tara Deby do not think a self-protective union to be an insurmountable problem. But as Bickhart has said, no one outside knows how hard it is to get anything by City bureaucrasy. More than one Commisioner has said the same.In many situations, because of the roadblocks imposed by the bureaucracy and the union, Ed has attempted to go around those blockages and do it without union or council sanctions, and we have keel-hauled him once he is discovered so great is our eagerness to get rid of him. But Ed is not too bright. He publicly announces his attempts to go around Council. That is a dumb move.
In an act both of courage and self-protection, and also by the Commissions demand, Boks hired a consultant (Erica Meadows; I don’t know her qualifications) to examine LAAS’s volunteer program which had fallen apart disastrously by 2006. Her report really damns department staff from top to bottom, including Boks himself.
Boks published the results at:
This is one paragraph of the Meadows report regarding her assessment of the volunteer program.
Respect - Ms. Meadows stated there appears to be a total lack of respect, integration and understanding of the Volunteer Program within the entire structure of LAAS – and at all levels from within the individual shelters, to the top levels of administration.
She made the following recommendations: assign volunteers to the Administrative Division; allocate a budget; provide adequate supervision; and amend the grievance procedures to extend to the General Manager. The lack of respect is a serious problem that must be changed. There may be better ways to address the respect issue.
The GM’s report that published Meadows' results also talks about changes made—this may all be bull, and you need to tell me if the changes actually took place.
May I make a suggestion? Like I said, I am afraid Tony will bring in a worse Bozo out of his sheer incompetence or spite, and will refuse to bring Winograd in. Remember, according to Bickhart, Winograd was offered a consulting contract before Boks was hired but did not bother to submit a proposal; this may or may not be true. Ask Nathan.
I think we ought to allow Boks one chance to save his job or at least delay his departure while he applies for a job in Cleveland (Which soon would become the largest adoption agency in the world), and that is for him to be humble for a change, swallow his pride and agree to bring in Winograd to consult and to publish Winograd’s findings no matter what they are. He has expressed to me he’d rather die that to allow this to happen. So be it. It would be his choice.
If Boks can find $20,000 to pay a “friend” Pia Salk to consult, he can find $120,000 to hire Winograd to do a four month study. $120,000 is not unreasonable for a consultant of Winograd’s status, as it would amount to about $130/hour, only $30 and hour more that an unqualified Pia made.
This will never happen, but the alternative is the get rid of Boks immediately because he cannot, or will not do what is necessary to defeat opposition to implementing no-kill by Council or the union and to work with the Commission.