Sheriff Says Budget Mediation Unsuccessful, Likely Headed Back To Governor

March 19, 2018

Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan said in a release  Monday afternoon that a signed budget mediation agreement with Escambia County appears unsuccessful, and he is likely continuing his appeal to Gov. Rick Scott.

The Sheriff’s Office released the following statement:

“The attempt to resolve the budget appeal through mediation appears to have been unsuccessful. Based on communication after the mediation, the BOCC staff wants to include any future contributions or cost increases to Worker’s Compensation, Unemployment Compensation, Florida Retirement System, and Health Care, as part of what was agreed to as a salary fix. The BOCC will be free to increase their own subsidies and the other constitutional officer’s subsidies over the next 3 years while keeping the Sheriff’s Office at current levels. There would be no way to project what an employee’s salary would be in three years if subsidy increases have to come out of the salary dollars.
“We cannot go into the details of the mediation per a confidentiality agreement. More work was to be done to flesh out the details of the Mediation Settlement as evidenced the BOCC’s County Attorney (who was present during the mediation) drafting a more detailed Interlocal Agreement that was sent to us last week for review and input. There now seems to be some internal conflict between the Commissioners concerning the agreement. In addition, the BOCC is now attempting to unilaterally define the Mediation Settlement by casting aside the more detailed draft Interlocal Agreement. We asked the BOCC to join a conference call with the mediator on Friday to clarify the issues. They declined. If the Commissioners are now being told that the mediation settlement was always meant to be the final language in the Interlocal Agreement, we would encourage them to individually and directly contact the mediator for clarification of that point. We will not accept any settlement that prevents the full implementation of the salary study or fails to correct the gross underfunding of ECSO salaries. We are fully confident that when the facts are presented to the Governor that he will decide in the ECSO’s favor.”

Just before noon Monday, Joy Tsubooka, Escambia County public information officer, said the county had not yet been informed about the failure of the mediation agreement.

County Attorney Alison Rogers emailed each commissioner and Administrator Jack Brown at 4:54 p.m. Friday to inform them that an interlocal agreement affirming the mediation agreement had been emailed at 4:28 p.m. to Gerald Champagne, in-house counsel for the ECSO.

The email stated “Attached is an interlocal that incorporates the Mediation Agreement. If your client executes it, please advise.”

To read the interlocal agreement as written by Escambia County, click here (pdf).

To read the interlocal agreement with changes by the ECSO in red, click here (pdf).

For an earlier story, click here.


18 Responses to “Sheriff Says Budget Mediation Unsuccessful, Likely Headed Back To Governor”

  1. David Lamb on March 23rd, 2018 10:48 pm

    Will this increased budget help solve some unsolved murders!

  2. Bill on March 21st, 2018 5:56 pm

    We are coming up on the 2019 Budget cycle, where each office submits its request for funds to the BCC. Sometime thereafter “workshops” will be held to review those requests. Got a few suggestions for questions that would be appropriate to ask during these “reviews”,. Particularly the Sheriffs, which is the largest by far, but all should be reviewed in detail., if only one Commissioner with enough guts to do so. Maybe Barry, who should have an understanding of numbers. But one question would be. For the Sheriff, There is a line in the accounting records for an item called, “assignment” pay. Just what is this? The funding profile is approximately half a million a year not an insignificant number, based on accounting records from 2014 thru 2017. 2014 is 405,857, 2015 431,231, 2016 417,320 and 2017 455,001. Who determines who gets “assignment pay”,? is there a process that is gone thru or is it up to the Sheriff to determine? Is this based on the “assignment, of duties, such as member of the SWAT team, or a SRO? If a person leaves that particular “assignment” is the pay no longer provided? Is there any limit, by rank, as to who may receive “assignment pay”. Are persons above the rank of Lt eligible, and if so which ones? Are Non sworn personnel eligible, or is this restricted to SWORN only? Who and how is the amount paid determined? Who approves? How much is going to be spent for such assignment pay in 2018, and what is the amount included in the budget request for 2019?

  3. John on March 20th, 2018 10:27 pm

    If there is such a budget problem for ECSO, then what’s with the big gas monster 8 cylinder suv’s? Think about all that extra gas wasted. Jacksonville cops drive 6 cylinder sedans and they serve perfectly well and you don’t need a v8 engine for police work anymore. What happens when you give money to a drunk? He’ll waste it and scream for more. Eliminate the waste; get rid of the gas guzzlers, save money on fuel and have more money for raises.

  4. Charlie Mike on March 20th, 2018 9:03 pm

    This sheriff never met a camera he didn’t love. How about trim the fat from your administrative offices, then come to the county with a reasonable budget request? You are the sheriff of a medium-sized county. You don’t need or deserve an entourage. I believe most of this is a result of his desperate need for attention.

  5. Willis on March 20th, 2018 8:31 pm

    Judging from the comments it appears the Sheriff has about a 20% approval rating.
    Seems high to me.

  6. Grand Locust on March 19th, 2018 11:09 pm

    What would happen if the Sheriff’s budget was cut by 10%? How would the department become more efficient? How could we improve citizen safety with a 10% cut in the Sheriff’s budget? I think there are answers to these questions, but they are never asked. The only question asked is how can we expand the Sheriff’s budget. It is time to start asking questions which are based in common sense, and which put the taxpayer and citizens first. It just seems to me that the tail is wagging the dog, and like the little boy who looked at the King’s new clothes, he announced to the horror of all the brainwashed citizens………the King is naked.

    I have always liked Sheriff Morgan, but this societal problem is bigger than Escambia County. or how Sheriff Morgan runs the department. It begins when a conservative says enough with government spending, and sorry what we spend on fire and police should be put back on the table for negotiation and discussion like waste in the police or fire budgets is exempt from good government…..a big nope to that. There was a time when conservative politicians kept a close eye on the checkbook including fire and police……today they simply lack the courage to defend the taxpayer….it is easier to cave in every year to growing unchecked budgets and then announce that as a politician they are friends to police and first responders….and who is working for the citizens to cut waste and improve efficiency?

  7. Truther on March 19th, 2018 9:54 pm

    If your hands are clean then you have no worries. But I would venture to say, one might regret getting the governor involved and causing such a fit- fuss. It’s not just the governor who has knowledge of this. There are other legal matters in this county!!! Sheriff David Morgan is on his way out, soon enough.

  8. Smokey on March 19th, 2018 9:14 pm

    This sheriff. #somethinelse

  9. Mark on March 19th, 2018 8:01 pm

    As I recall, during his first year in office, Gov. Scott cut the budget for police and schools.

  10. Olin S Schultz on March 19th, 2018 7:22 pm

    Greed will not win votes Sir Morgan of the round table! So now instead of something extra for our men and women of the E.C.S.O., its all or nothing .
    This is like a dictatorship playing with their people. Shame on you David Morgan. To the real deputies of Escambia County, keep your heads held high. The king and his round table will be gone soon enough.

  11. Sage2 on March 19th, 2018 6:52 pm

    Up with Sheriff Morgan for improved funding of the ECSO!

  12. Tom on March 19th, 2018 5:59 pm

    Put the issue on the ballot (special vote) and let the people decide. Or get rid of the commisioners and keep the administrator to decide, or get a new sheriff???
    Just some thoughts, and not necessarily my opinion!

  13. Bama on March 19th, 2018 5:58 pm

    Maybe if he showed the governor his military medals, just saying.

  14. Tom on March 19th, 2018 5:47 pm

    Is our county form of government “of the people, by the people, and for the people”?
    Looks to me there are too many chiefs who cannot agree. Perhaps one county administrator could do the job of the multiple commisioners! Put the problem on the ballot and let the People decide the issue. These are just some thoughts and not necessarily my opinion.

  15. Bob C. on March 19th, 2018 5:36 pm

    Poor Sheriff, it must be really difficult to manage a budget when your Chief Financial Officer is not at work for nearly 2 months and has seemingly just up and disappeared.
    Where is the CFO for ECSO?

  16. Citizen on March 19th, 2018 5:05 pm

    At first I though going to the Governor was silly but now I say..Go to the Governor. Let the State Look at Everything. Don’t stop now. Go all the Way.

  17. Citizen on March 19th, 2018 5:02 pm

    What I don’t like is that the BOCC thinks $$ needs to come from outside agencies that are helping in the communities.
    I suppose the PEDC could be cut but that’s probably someone’s friend that depends on that $$.
    Why doesn’t BCC quit paying contractors so much for change over runs and contract costs and for studies that may not be necessary?
    The engineers are making a killing off tax payer’s dime.
    The bond for the new jail is ridiculous.
    They spend millions on that, yet on the other hand why doesn’t the sheriff spend his budget more wisely also.
    Sidewalks, beach access and roundabout aren’t necessary.
    They are All guilty
    We see the campaign contributions. We aren’t stupid.
    How about being PUBLIC servants? Not politics but government for the people.
    I’m really tired of all this from both/all sides.

  18. randy on March 19th, 2018 4:10 pm

    down with king morgan …

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