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Seminole city manager gets single negative evaluation from council

SEMINOLE — Six of Frank Edmunds' bosses think he's a great city manager.

But his seventh boss — Seminole council member Patricia Plantamura — is definitely not a fan. On a recent job evaluation, she awarded Edmunds only 33 out of 72 points, an "F" by anyone's standards.

During the oral evaluation, Plantamura had harsh words for the veteran city manager, accusing him of violating state law, contributing to high turnover in the city clerk job and failing to respond in writing to criticisms she made in last year's job evaluation.

"Unfortunately, the questions I asked and the issues I brought forth last year have not been acknowledged, nor have they been addressed," Plantamura said. "I specifically asked for written answers to questions, and as soon as was possible, but again, no response to date, one year later."

Plantamura's criticisms carried no weight with other council members and seemed to rile Bob Matthews, who suggested holding a workshop to discuss why Edmunds was constantly being criticized. When that suggestion went nowhere, he successfully suggested holding a workshop to discuss extending Edmunds' contract, which is scheduled to end in 2013.

Matthews' evaluation, like those of the remaining members of the council, showed Edmunds' continued high standing.

"Frank manages our city in every way with only one goal: what is best for the residents of Seminole at the best price," Matthews said. He gave Edmunds 69 out of 72 points.

Mayor Jimmy Johnson also gave Edmunds 69 points, saying he "continues to be the driving force in the continuing success of the city of Seminole."

Council members James Quinn and Leslie Waters both gave Edmunds a perfect 72. Waters said, "In my opinion, Frank Edmunds exceeds expectations in all … categories."

Quinn was equally complimentary: "We are very lucky to have such an outstanding city manager."

The remaining two council members, Tom Barnhorn and John Counts, gave Edmunds a 67 and a 66.5 , respectively.

Plantamura's low marks come as no surprise. She has been critical of Edmunds ever since being elected to the council. She has even discussed her displeasure with him at gatherings with officials from other municipalities.

Much of her criticism has centered on his $121,625 annual salary and accusations that the exact amount cannot be pinpointed. But she did not dwell on that in her current evaluation. Instead, she had other complaints.

She accused Edmunds of violating the state Sunshine Law for not seeing that the minutes from council workshops were recorded and transcribed. However, the workshops are recorded and are available on the city website, and copies can be obtained from the city. City Attorney John Elias said there is no violation.

She also accused Edmunds of contributing to the "high turnover" of city clerks in the 15 years he has been city manager. City records show that there have been eight clerks during that time, including the incumbent. Until the charter was changed, those clerks were hired, managed and fired by the council.

Of the seven who left, one retired after it was discovered she burned public records; another resigned to move out of state with her husband; a third resigned to avoid being fired when she was arrested and charged with driving under the influence; two resigned to go to other cities; one transferred to the fire department; and one left after a tiff with a council member.

Despite the criticism, Plantamura does seem to be warming a bit to Edmunds, Last year, she gave him only 26 points out of a possible 72.

Seminole city manager gets single negative evaluation from council 07/17/10 [Last modified: Friday, July 16, 2010 5:09pm]
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