A Summarizing Comment

Sometimes when I get a comment that seems especially insightful. I post it. This was sent in today below:

Chick will be auditing the financial side of the Department. She will see problems. Here are but a few:

(1) City Council approved new license canvassers. The Department started the program then ended it without City Council knowledge. Council President Eric Garcetti reprimanded Boks for ending the program without telling them. The canvassing program brings in revenue from licenses besides ensuring that animals are spayed and neutered which reduces overpopulation.

(2) In order to seem to improve statistics the Department kept animals longer, sometimes many months.In order to keep so many they overcrowded the cages. This caused the spread of disease. This did not improve their chance at adoption. This "warehousing" cost the City more money in terms of extra food, veterinary care and medicine. The Department went over their budget for food and vet care in 2006 for this reason.

(3) Director Ed Boks hired his ex-girlfriend Pia Salk to do a report on Humane LA. He gave her$20,000. No one has seen the report and there is no Humane LA program. The Commissioners were upset that he hired her without informing anyone so they made a motion that all consultants paid over$5,000 must now be approved by the commissioners.

(4) Director Ed Boks hired a friend to do a report on the volunteer department. He paid $30,000 for the report. No one has seen this report, only a summary of the report written by someone else. That summary basically told everyone what they already know about the shortcomings of the volunteer department.

(5) Employees frequently use Department supplies for their own purpose. Ex-volunteer coordinator Heidi Heubner used Department supplies, animals and volunteers to run her private Kids n Pets classes. She gave paid classes for Kids n Pets when she was supposed to be working. There are many instances of employees doing the same thing.

(6) Poor oversight of Department employees has caused a few lawsuits to be filed against the Department. One recently settled for $99,000 for sexual harassment by Commander Diliberto. Many reports of sexual harassment by Commander Diliberto were sent in before the Department was sued.Another lawsuit was recently filed by a rescuer after she was held against her will inside the shelter and had her camera physically taken away from her. Another lawsuit may soon be filed because of a false arrest by an under trained over zealous Animal Cruelty Task Force. These lawsuits could have been avoided if there was better oversight.

(7) Boks started the New Hope program which was just a new name for the old rescue partner program. He made all animals to New Hope partners free. Adoptions did not improve yet revenue was lost. He did the same thing in Arizona. After he left they went back to charging for the animals. Even though Boks knew this program failed in Arizona, he still did it in LA. He knew this incentive was failing as soon as he started it, yet he continued.


Anonymous said...

Great comment, but what will change if Boks is defenestrated?
Look at ADL's list of former employees, and tell us what has improved now that all those horrible people are gone and replaced by other equally worthless civil servants.

Whoever takes over will need to control the managers and supervisors. All of them were promoted by favoritism and none are effectual. They've already got theirs and, those that aren't angling for further promotion (by leaking info to you about their boss or potential competitors for the next cushy promotion) are just trying to avoid doing anything until they retire.

The district managers are complacent yes-men/women and line supervisors are incapable of supervising the people that work in the kennel.

Nothing is really going to change unless you replace the entire department. Then you can start looking at the citizens who let their unsterilized animals run at large and reproduce freely. Maybe you might want to look at the pet shops selling the $3000"schnoodles" from Arkansas puppy mills.

Anonymous said...

So let's get rid of the entire department. It's not undoable. Yes, unions are unions (I'm in favor of unions, but not as a way for people to avoid doing their jobs, which is clearly the case at LAAS) and civil service, as currently constructed, is civil service. But it wouldn't be impossible to change if we had a good Mayor, with a sharp media sense, and a good, qualified, humane person as GM - with a zero-tolerance policy for employee misconduct of any kind. It's not like a union is going to look good saying L.A.'s animals don't deserve the best care. And there is no third position. You can't say, "Our animals deserve only 72%." The unions so far haven't been forced into taking a stand on what the animals deserve. Why is that?

But anyway, for God's sake people, we are Los Angeles. We've got some bright people in this city. We've got people who are so rich they never have to work again,. We have the resources to tackle this twenty-four hours a day until we have a solution. All we need is the momentum.

The big joke in all of this? This would be a brilliant move for Villaraigosa to rehab his image -- to really dig in and fix this from the ground up. Humane issues are not just bipartisan, they're omni-partisan.

Anonymous said...

Our mayor doesn't care about the city. He doesn't care about improving things. He doesn't even like animals. The only thing he cares about is his next political gig. He wants to be governor, maybe even president. (If he becomes president I will move to Mexico, Canada, Turkey or even the moon)

Because the Mayor runs the City what he wants is what the city "wants." He just doesn't want to be embarrassed so he can get another job after this one. He wouldn't care if all animals died.

Knowing the Mayor's true agenda,we must embarrass him about this issue so he'll get off his lazy ass and do something. We need to find a way to get this story in the media

Anonymous said...

One more point.

(8) Boks is doing a bad job collecting license fees. This is loss of revenue and more animals are walking around without rabies shots and unsterilized.