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Without Commission Approval, Mayor Gillum to Spend $40,000 on Three “Graduate Interns”

Posted on August 31, 2015

Without Commission Approval, Mayor Gillum to Spend $40,000 on Three “Graduate Interns”

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.

Fellows

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.

15 Responses to Without Commission Approval, Mayor Gillum to Spend $40,000 on Three “Graduate Interns”

  1. MW Simpson Reply

    August 31, 2015 at 4:26 pm

    Several months ago, Michael Alfono promised to get back with me on a number of issues in the name of the Mayor. All lies. After permission from me, Mayor Gillum used my information / recommendations to give to Chief of Police on retraining issues and then after that “meeting on retraining” with Chief, he never took or returned any of my calls about anything else.

    And there are other issues I wished to convey answers for, wasteful spending issues. This office has been ineffective and appear to be riding on a wave of term politics “because the they can.”

    I always begin my relations diplomatically but I won’t be ignored. No other issues during the Mayor’s tenure have been addressed by phone or email as requested. I gave up on him. Especially recently, when he essentially chose NAACP over the People of Tallahassee.

  2. Chris Reply

    August 31, 2015 at 4:45 pm

    Can Tallahassee Reports name one instance when the new Mayor actually HAS been forthcoming and honest regarding spending taxpayer money?

  3. BEC Reply

    August 31, 2015 at 6:17 pm

    People for the American Way?

  4. Jerry Kimbro Reply

    September 1, 2015 at 2:13 am

    And this is the crooked SOB who hates the Confederate flag. My family may have been Confederates- but they were all of them honest hard working Southerners.

  5. Chuck Reply

    September 1, 2015 at 8:43 am

    Yet again this Mayor thinks that he is above the law and that he doesn’t need to ask for approval from the rest of the Commissioners for what he does. Typical Obama wanna be

  6. tyrannybites Reply

    September 1, 2015 at 9:45 am

    The decline of western civilization.

  7. TBell Reply

    September 1, 2015 at 9:46 am

    Oh boy are you guys reaching again…goin after 3 grad interns? Say what you will bout the one thats elected, but headhunting the interns is a new low.

    • BEC Reply

      September 1, 2015 at 10:14 am

      Sorry, these are not interns. They are being PAID!

      • TBell Reply

        September 1, 2015 at 10:39 am

        “Without Commission Approval, Mayor Gillum to Spend $40,000 on Three ‘Graduate INTERNS'” — you’re so right. my mistake.

    • Preston Scott

      Preston Scott Reply

      September 1, 2015 at 7:05 pm

      Reaching, TBell? You may not care about the local government that is completely off the rails, but more and more people do. There is a growing wave of citizens and businesses that have had enough. Remember 68% voted for an independent ethics officer AFTER the City installed its own? That’s because of continuous crap like this story outlines. Gillum has a budget to work with, it’s $5,000. He is not just doubling it, but going eight times past it. No discussion, no voting, nothing. Since becoming Mayor he has repeatedly flaunted protocols and is acting independently. It is time to return to a rotating ceremonial Mayoral position. Marks and Gillum have made the Mayor’s office a cesspool.

  8. DavidB Reply

    September 1, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    Hey, hey, hey everybody! Andy’s JUST following in the “I don’t give a damn” steps of his hero, BHO.

    Whatcha’ll getting so upset about? Are you SURPRISED?!?

  9. Richard B. Reply

    September 2, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    Same old, same old until we clean house at city hall. Trouble is , the un informed that voted for them!

  10. Larry Simmons Reply

    September 5, 2015 at 8:26 am

    If you think City Hall needs to be cleaned up, get your people to the voting polls on election day. The people of Tallahassee elected the Mayor just recently, right?

  11. Anita Reply

    March 1, 2016 at 10:56 am

    I’m appalled by the comments I am reading in this section. It is absolutely paramount that young people in graduate school have opportunities to become practitioners in their fields and there is no reason why they should not be rewarded financially for doing this. This is a pathway from theoretical studies to practical learning and becoming a public servant. It’s wonderful that the Mayor offers this internship opportunity and I not only hope that the office will continue to do so, but that other city and state departments will also participate in this great practice.

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