Saturday, November 17, 2018
News Roundup

More than 130 CareerSource Tampa Bay employees to be laid off in reorganization

One of Tampa Bay’s main job placement agencies is laying off more than 130 employees this summer as it separates from its sister office under increasing federal and state scrutiny.

Staffers at CareerSource Tampa Bay received notice Friday that they will lose their jobs Aug. 31. Word came from leaders at CareerSource Pinellas, the employer of record for both its workers and those of CareerSource Tampa Bay in neighboring Hillsborough County.

For years, the two job centers shared staff services and a leader, president and CEO Edward Peachey, who was fired this spring. CareerSource Tampa Bay board members voted to separate from CareerSource Pinellas after federal and state officials began investigating whether the agencies inflated their hiring numbers.

THE ORIGINAL STORY: CareerSource centers took credit for thousands of hires they had nothing to do with

CareerSource Tampa Bay decided to rebuild its staff from scratch, but administrators have said they hope many of the laid off workers return to similar positions.

"We anticipate that once (CareerSource Tampa Bay) begins the interview process, many of these individuals will be hired by them," said CareerSource Pinellas interim executive director Jennifer Brackney. "As we move forward, we encourage all staff to apply for open positions."

PAYOUTS: Payroll records show $3.1 million in bonuses, incentives at CareerSource centers

Agency leaders and board members have talked about the layoffs for more than a month, but they didn’t formally notify employees until Friday.

Brackney said 133 staffers received the layoff notice out of 212 employed between both agencies. The job centers had planned to separate by July 1 but recently delayed the split until Sept. 1.

The move comes as leaders await reports from the U.S. Department of Labor and Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, which are reviewing whether the centers for years reported they got jobs for people who never sought their help.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, a Republican who in February called for a federal investigation, last week tacked on language to legislation that will require the Labor Department to brief the Senate Appropriations Committee when it wraps up its review.

MONEY: Tampa Bay job centers gave away millions in gift cards and boosted hiring totals

Rubio, along with several other federal and state lawmakers, have questioned whether tax dollars were misspent at CareerSource Pinellas and CareerSource Tampa Bay. The two nonprofits are funded by public money and are part of a network of 24 job placement agencies across Florida.

For years, CareerSource Pinellas and CareerSource Tampa Bay touted themselves as among the state’s best jobs agencies. They placed well in employment competitions and posted strong hiring numbers each year.

READ: Tampa Bay jobs centers entered thousands of fictitious phone numbers in state network

The investigations were touched off in January after the Tampa Bay Times raised questions with the DEO about the local offices’ job placement figures.

Contact Mark Puente at [email protected] or (727) 892-2996. Follow @MarkPuente. Contact Zachary T. Sampson at [email protected] or (727) 893-8804. Follow @ZackSampson.

Comments
Louis Domingue gets a workout in Lightning’s 6-5 overtime win

Louis Domingue gets a workout in Lightning’s 6-5 overtime win

PHILADELPHIA—The Lightning asked a lot of Louis Domingue on Sunday, allowing a season-high of 45 shots.For most of the game, Domingue stood up to them, but Philadelphia applied pressure late in the third to force overtime. But Lightning won 6-5...
Updated: 6 minutes ago
Temple scores 27 unanswered to beat USF 27-17

Temple scores 27 unanswered to beat USF 27-17

PHILADELPHIA — USF's spiral continues.Despite the Bulls' defense answering the call, the offense and special teams failed to respond as the Owls reeled off 27 unanswered points in the second half, storming back for a 27-17 win Saturday at Linco...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Why the Buccaneers can beat the Giants but still lose

Why the Buccaneers can beat the Giants but still lose

Tampa Bay is in a race, just not the one you hoped it would be in.
Updated: 2 hours ago
Police: One dead after Tampa home invasion robbery

Police: One dead after Tampa home invasion robbery

An unidentified man died after suffering upper body trauma during the robbery, police said.
Updated: 2 hours ago
Hillsborough Sheriff: Man dead after crashing into deputy, fleeing, then crashing again

Hillsborough Sheriff: Man dead after crashing into deputy, fleeing, then crashing again

Deputies said he hit a sheriff's office cruiser, then sped away before losing control and crashing again. He died on the scene.
Updated: 2 hours ago
Rays Tales: Does Blake Snell’s Cy Young salvage the 2011 draft?

Rays Tales: Does Blake Snell’s Cy Young salvage the 2011 draft?

For all the misses the Rays had in the 2011 draft, Snell has been a pretty big hit. Is that enough?
Updated: 3 hours ago
Tuning in to Hernando government TV? Thank these guys.

Tuning in to Hernando government TV? Thank these guys.

The two work jobs full of endless little issues, reliable-but-outdated equipment and behind-the-scenes effort. But they take it on for a greater goal: bringing government to the people.
Updated: 3 hours ago
Man injured in Pasco County paramotor crash

Man injured in Pasco County paramotor crash

An man was hospitalized Saturday after crashing a paramotor in rural San Antonio, Pasco County Fire Rescue officials said.The crash happened about 11:30 a.m. in the 26500 block of Fields Farm Lane, west of Bellamy Brothers Boulevard and north of Stat...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Shorecrest claims first state volleyball title

Shorecrest claims first state volleyball title

FORT MYERS — Almost as soon as the ball slammed to the court, Jacqueline St. Cin started crying. Her thunderous kill, one of 16 on the day, finished off a 25-23, 25-18, 25-22 Class 4A state final win over Palm Beach Gardens Benjamin on Saturday...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Sheriff: Pasco teacher filmed student undressing, arrested on voyeurism charge

Sheriff: Pasco teacher filmed student undressing, arrested on voyeurism charge

Deputies said Fivay High School teacher Thomas Kovack admitted to recording a 17-year-old student as she changed her shirt.
Updated: 5 hours ago