Tallahassee Reports has learned, that so far this year, Mayor Andrew Gillum’s office has spent approximately $30,000 on three interns. Based on annual rates provided to TR, the interns are scheduled to be paid $40,000 by the end of 2015.
The table below was provided when asked about the amount of city tax dollars used to pay interns in the Mayor’s office. The table includes paid and non-paid interns.
The three interns are part of a “Fellow Program” that Mayor Gillum instituted. However, it appears Gillum never sought approval for the program from the City Commission.
A review of agenda items show no reference to the “Fellow Program” and no details about activities or responsibilities.
In addition, there is no reference to the expenditures in the upcoming budget.
What is the source of the revenues used for the program?
TR asked for details on the expenditures several times and the final answer received in an email said that:
“In response to the discussed public info request, the Mayor’s office budget, similar to many city departments, traditionally has a line item intended for temporary wages. In response to your inquiry, any temporary wages paid to eligible temp/ interns would be charged to a temporary wage account.”
However, a quick look at the budget shows that approximately $5,000 was allocated for temporary wages in 2015.
So, where exactly does the tax money come from for the intern program? Not sure – TR will keep digging.
Also, sources within City Hall have raised questions about the number of people in the Mayor’s office. During this past summer, TR was able to verify that 7 paid employees and 2 non-paid interns were working out of the Mayor’s office.
According to sources, one issue upsetting city employees is the parking situation. It appears interns in the Mayor’s office get free parking while everyone else pays for a parking space.