Monday, September 26, 2005

A Sterling Performance - NOT!

Back in April, the City's contractor for storm water injection wells came to our neighborhood and tore up the intersection of Truman and Thomas Streets putting in the drains and collection tank for the well system. They left the sidewalk on the corner closest to us with a rough concrete patch job, promising that they would be back "soon" to redo the walks in full compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Now it's almost October, and the street and sidewalk are in the same condition as they were last April. Twelve days ago, I wrote an e-mail to the Director of Utilities for the City. I copied a number of current and future City officials on the e-mail, got a flurry of responses, but nothing obvious is being done. The barricade that was protecting the corner and letting pedestrians know that the sidewalk is dangerous disappeared sometime before hurricane Rita approached, a week ago, and it hasn't come back yet.

It's little things like this, taken in aggregate when they happen all over the City, that are evidence that the City is not being managed well. In his dreams City Manager Julio Avael sees Key West as a Sterling City, an award given by the Governor's Sterling Foundation to FLorida organizations who can demonstrate "significant improvement and achievement of performance excellence". Having had some experience in programs like this one -- mine was the Crosby Quality Program during the late 80's -- I can tell you that there will have to be some serious changes made in the way this City operates before it has any chance of collecting the Sterling Award.

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