Daily Archives: July 28, 2016

Too Many Cooks Equals No Broth

Sorry to do this to you first thing in the morning, but it’s time for a reading and math comprehension test!

Take a look at this table, and see if any numbers jump out at you.

AuditorTable 7.16

The abbreviations in the first column are for three departments in state government: Human Resources, Information & Innovation, and Finance & Management. And the answer, or at least the answer I’m looking for, is on the DHR line.

The Department of Human Resources has 25 supervisors and 82 classified employees. That’s a rather stunning ratio of one supervisor for every 3.28 supervisees.

There is no absolute ideal ratio; it depends on many factors. But rarely, if ever, is 1:3 a reasonable figure.

There may be perfectly good explanations for DHR’s ratio. But to the outside eye, it looks like featherbedding.

This table comes to us courtesy of State Auditor Doug Hoffer. It’s included in his latest performance audit, which exposes a dismaying case of administrative sloppiness in state government. In those three departments, administrators routinely failed to conduct annual performance reviews with their staff.

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The VPR Poll: Point/Counterpoint

Apparently my previous post pricked some delicate sensibilities at VPR’s brand spankin’ new $10,000,000 Palace Of Genteel Broadcasting, because within a few hours this blog had received comments from VPR News Director John Dillon and Director of Digital Services Jonathan Butler, attempting to explain why their Castleton Polling Institute survey didn’t include the question foremost in political junkies’ minds: how are the primaries for governor and lieutenant governor shaping up?

Their explanations were earnest, extensive, and only partly convincing. I’ve still got problems and unanswered questions.

Starting with this. Nowhere in its poll-related online content, as far as I can tell, do they disclose the lack of direct, “who would you vote for?” questions on the key statewide races. Did it not occur to anyone in the P.O.G.B. that listeners might wonder about this singular omission?

Apparently not. Either that, or they were embarrassed about it and were hoping to slip it under the door while nobody was looking.

Well, on to the explanations. Which bore striking similarities, almost as though somebody had a meeting.

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