UPDATE: Is the new Sioux Falls City Council Clerk coming out of thin air?

image001

It would seem so, even if you pay attention to this stuff like I do;

The City Council announced today that they will be acting upon the recommendation of the Council’s ad hoc hiring committee to appoint Tom Greco as City Clerk at their meeting on December 15, 2015.

Mr. Greco recently completed service after 20 years in the U.S. Army. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science from the United States Military Academy, a Master of Public Policy from Georgetown University, and an Engineering Management Degree from the University of Missouri-Rolla. His last assignment in the Army was with the Corps of Engineers as the Deputy District Commander for South Florida.

“I’m excited about this opportunity for continued public service and am eager to work with the City Council and serve the residents of this great community,” said Mr. Greco.

Current City Clerk Lorie Hogstad will be retiring in May of 2016. Mr. Greco will begin on January 11, 2016. The positions will overlap for a training period through the April 12, 2016, Municipal Election. The City Council will take action on the appointment of the City Clerk at their December 15, 2015, meeting.

After Lori Hogstad announced her retirement* earlier in the year, I vaguely recall the council planning on doing a national search for her replacement, but I can’t remember when that was. About a month ago I asked a city councilor about the replacement, he didn’t say one peep to me about picking someone from a national search when I asked him who would replace Lori? “So will it be Tamara or Denise (assistant city clerks) that will replace Lori?” With a smirk on his face he replied, “They can apply if they want to.” Now looking back on the conversation, I now realize that Mr. Greco was probably already chosen. No dig on him, or the national search, I actually applaud the council for putting their best effort forward to find the most qualified person. Tom has an impressive resume, though I am not to keen on a military person running an office that needs to be very transparent. People in the military are trained to keep secrets, and they are very good at it. Another publicly funded building in Sioux Falls has a military man running operations, and that place is a lockbox.

UPDATE: As I understand it now, a National search WAS NOT done for the clerk. Mr. Greco has been living in Sioux Falls since 2010 transitioning into retirement.

I will give Tom the benefit of the doubt though, with his impressive resume, I have no doubt he is a quick learner.

Where I disagree with the council is how they went about this, pretty much in total secrecy. For a council that cries about transparency from the mayor’s office, it seems a bit hypocritical to go about hiring a replacement clerk in this matter, especially someone who will be in charge of our elections. Does Tom have election experience? Is he even registered to vote? Him and his physician wife (VA medical center, and Sanford USD medical school) took up residency in Sioux Falls in 2010. Maybe the AD Hoc meetings are open to the public, but I wouldn’t even know where to begin to find there schedule.

Then there is this line in the press release;

Mr. Greco will begin on January 11, 2016.

Almost like it is a forgone conclusion that the council will rubber stamp him next Tuesday.

Like I said, I will keep an open mind, and welcome Mr. Greco to our city.

*I find it a bit ironic that the city had to force out former city clerk Debra Owen, so they could prop up Lori into a higher pay bracket just a few years before her retirement. Hmm, wonder how that affects her retirement benefits?



4 comments ↓

#1 The D@ily spin on 12.11.15 at 3:00 pm

A city clerk more qualified to be mayor. Nothing makes sense in city government anymore. Perhaps his purpose is to take over as mayor and give Huether a full pardon for his public funds fraud

#2 Poly43 on 12.12.15 at 11:48 am

First off, the commission appointed city clerk serves at their pleasure (and the mayors). This was made perfectly clear when five commissioners essentially fired Debra Owen. Why? Still very unclear to this day. When that same council revamped the city clerk job description to that of an administrator versus that of a clerk who could legally engage in policy matters tells me all I need to know about why five commissioners were totally intimidated by a clerk who knew more about their jobs than they did.

Here is the new job description of the city clerk.

https://my.siouxfalls.org/ViewPDF.aspx?name=004.pdf

Looks to be purely administrative tasks only. Seems to me this could have, and should have been filled by a current city employee. Hiring an over qualified outsider who’s military retirement pension check makes the 75K he will make as clerk seem like chump change. Secondly, why would a person with this type of background want to serve at the “pleasure” our current commission?

#3 Poly43 on 12.12.15 at 1:29 pm

Mr. Greco may have had a SF mailing addrrss since 2010, but it’s not where he put his boots on the ground. Remember, he just retired from the Army with a full 20 year military pension.

As for the golden parachute the current clerk bails out with? If she saved a good part of her sick leave hours, then it will look very similar to the golden parachute metli bailed out with.

#4 anominous on 12.12.15 at 1:36 pm

COE has been very good for this town’s budget surplus.

Leave a Comment