Archive for Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Statehouse Live: Former state hospital chief ‘shocked’ by administration’s plan to close Lawrence office

July 26, 2011, 12:09 p.m. Updated July 26, 2011, 1:48 p.m.

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— Greg Valentine, who on July 1 was in charge of two state mental health facilities, said that on that day he was paid a visit by two high-ranking lieutenants of Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services Secretary Robert Siedlecki Jr.

Valentine said SRS Deputy Secretary Pedro Moreno and SRS Chief Counsel Bob Corkins told Valentine he could resign or consider himself fired or laid off.

They said Valentine had done a good job as superintendent of Osawatomie State Hospital and manager of the Rainbow Mental Health Facility in Kansas City.

Valentine said that Moreno and Corkins said the decision wasn't personal. Valentine said they said, "We want people loyal to the secretary and governor." Gov. Sam Brownback, a Republican, appointed Siedlecki as SRS secretary.

Valentine's remarks were made Tuesday in an interview with the Lawrence Journal-World.

Angela de Rocha, a spokeswoman for SRS, denied that Moreno or Corkins said that. "They did not say anything like that," she said.

She added, "This is obviously a disgruntled former employee who has used you for his own personal purposes." Valentine said the conversation did take place, and added that he was not disgruntled at all.

On the same day of Valentine's departure, Larned State Hospital Superintendent Robert Connell was also dismissed by SRS.

De Rocha said SRS cannot comment on specific personnel matters other than to confirm employment or departure.

July 1 was also the same day SRS announced the closure of nine agency offices, including the one in Lawrence.

Valentine, an 11-year veteran of SRS who has worked under Republican and Democratic administrations and been a part of SRS administrative cost-cutting, says he was stunned by the decision to close the Lawrence office.

"I was shocked that Lawrence was chosen because it is so large," he said.

Brownback and Siedlecki have said the office closures are needed to comply with a legislative mandate to reduce SRS administrative costs by $1 million. They have said people served by the Lawrence office will be able to access services online or travel to nearby cities, such as Topeka, Overland Park.

But local advocates and law enforcement say this approach isn't reasonable and will result in many people losing needed assistance, increasing costs on non-profit organizations, and more crime.

And some legislators have said Siedlecki mis-read the Legislature's intent and wanted cuts in administrative expenses, such as salaries, instead of shutting down offices.

Valentine also said the Brownback administration has gone much farther in removing veteran SRS workers than previous administrations.

Typically in a change of administration, Cabinet-level secretaries and some top agency chiefs will change, he said. "You just don't see it going to the levels that it is going," said Valentine, who said he is registered as a Republican voter. He said there have been approximately 30 people that he knows of who have been forced out at SRS.

Comments

question4u 4 years ago

"We want people loyal to the secretary and governor."

Sieg heil! The Long Knives are out.

johnnyreb 4 years ago

Seriously! Rothchild, you've beat this dead horse enough! The office is closing, get over it. Quit making news, and just report it. Who cares what some disgruntled employee thinks, it is almost like chasing an irrelevant former Secretary of SRS from 20 years ago for a comment. Oh forgot, you've already done that also! Could we get the Ouija board out and see what Governor Docking thinks about it!!

Bob_Keeshan 4 years ago

Boy, you right wing zealots sure are sensitive about your actions being questioned.

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, eh? How democratic of you, little d, as in we live in a democracy.

Well, maybe the zealots don't...

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

Obviously it's NOT a dead horse. You only WISH it was. Obviously you are still following along with the story just like the rest of us. The only difference is, the wolf we call Governor has you brainwashed!

johnnyreb 4 years ago

Let me know how getting the office to remain open works out for you. This wolf has sailed!

Ron Holzwarth 4 years ago

johnnyreb, Mr. Valentine is not and never was an employee at the Lawrence SRS office.

johnnyreb 4 years ago

No kidding Captain Obvious! My point exactly! He is not relevant to the story.

earline james 4 years ago

...that, and he was the KCMetro Region(al) Director for a little while.

Ron Holzwarth 4 years ago

"We want people loyal to the secretary and governor." That's incredible! The National Socialist German Workers' Party (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, abbreviated NSDAP), known in English as the Nazi Party, is alive and well! Be afraid! Be very afraid!

nascar 4 years ago

So Brownback will pay big bucks to someone from out of state to be loyal. Seems to be a pattern here. The news of these two firings was overshadowed by the closure of the SRS offices. When Brownback announces a Friday Freak-out, watch for the undertow as there is likely a strong one. It's just quieter.

SDTPlant 4 years ago

toe,

First they came for the communists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.

Martin Niemoller, German Pastor

DRsmith 4 years ago

How much play can the LJ get out of this same story?

notanota 4 years ago

If by "the same story," you mean what an incompetent governor we have, I expect they'll be able to milk that one until he's out of office.

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

maybe until noone cares.. which could be a long long long long long long long long time! (even you cared enough to comment on it!)

notanota 4 years ago

The godwining isn't helping. He's scary enough without the hyperbole.

Come on Kansas, we're better than this, and Brownie should be ashamed. It's time to make some noise about it. I'd be just as ticked if it were a D that did this. You don't need to belong to the same party as the gov in order to make sure kids don't get abused and disabled people get medical care. It certainly doesn't hurt, however, if your intent is to let those people fall through the cracks and bury the evidence.

Cait McKnelly 4 years ago

"It certainly doesn't hurt, however, if your intent is to let those people fall through the cracks and bury the evidence." Like his buddies from Florida did before they ever came here? And by the way, their "burying of the evidence" was literal.

notanota 4 years ago

The choice of language was intentional for that very reason.

Betty Adema 4 years ago

And wanting people loyal to the administration wouldn't happen if the political affiliation of (D) was behind his name? Please. I think the heat is getting to people.

Cait McKnelly 4 years ago

No, it wouldn't. Quoting from the article: "Valentine, an 11-year veteran of SRS who has worked under Republican and Democratic administrations and been a part of SRS administrative cost-cutting..." He also happens to be a registered Republican. I would say that's one vote Brownback loses in the next election.

Betty Adema 4 years ago

Yes, it would. Democrats are no less inclined to this than Republicans.

And I was referencing the state administration, not Mr. Valentine. Definitely the heat.

jafs 4 years ago

That would explain why Governor Sebelius replaced him with a loyal Democrat.

Oh wait, she didn't do anything of the sort.

Never mind.

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

This was a comment on a previous article... I sure do hope it's true.. and something tells me it is!! :) "chiefdist2 (anonymous) says… News from the inside......Brownbacks lawyers conceed that to void the building rental contacts at Lawrence and Fort Scott would cost the SRS 4 years worth of rental on those buildings. No way out, so no closing of those offices. Now, how will Brownback spin this to look like he made the choice due to his caring nature and the needs of Lawrence and Fort Scott rather than because the Administration failed to fully research the issue before slaming the liberal college town?" It will just show to go ya what an imbecile Browncrack is!!

notanota 4 years ago

They'll still close the offices and claim they're cost saving by losing us the 200k matching grant.

chiefdist2 4 years ago

Thank you larrytowngirl, was getting set to repost. It should be noted the Browncrack remark is yours not mine.

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

Yes... I claim it! lol.. (it was not in quotation marks.. but I understand your need to clarify!) and thanks so much for your post!! I look forward to the official announcement.. hopefully soon!!! :o)

chiefdist2 4 years ago

Yup, me too. It'll be another Friday bomb shell so those with short term memories can forget the issue!

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

It will be welcome news whenever it comes!! Seems the shoe may be on the other foot this time tho!! lol

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

Or better yet...the shoe & the foot in their mouths! lol

LH3867 4 years ago

larrytowngirl - I think you are right. That is the next announcement but no amount of spin is going to be accepted here. We know the truth. I agree he is an imbecele but I am sure he was assured by Siedlecki he knew what he was doing and that's the biggest joke of all. The man is not smart. SRS is in serious trouble. They have let everyone go who knows anything about the agency, including the intricacies of federal requirements for the programs SRS administers. It's a matter of timr before it blows. This whole administration is a waste of taxpayer dollars.

begin60 4 years ago

Dang! What an Orwellian definition of loyalty Brownback must have! Sad!

chiefdist2 4 years ago

rockcaulk1977, i know you have been following this story but I have to wonder if you think more upper-level admins. with obvious personality and educational deficiencies will improve service, remove "welfare moms", reduce your taxes or improve the quality of life that you enjoy?

deec 4 years ago

None of that really matters to his type. All that matters is that their team is winning. They're in the playoffs and in 2012 or 2016 will be pumped up to win the super bowl. Reality doesn't have any meaning to them, only team loyalty.

LH3867 4 years ago

Still trying to figure out which one of his trolls you are.

chiefdist2 4 years ago

More BS dude, just answer the question.

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

wow! Threats now?? Hmmm. Definitely shows the mindset!

1983Hawk 4 years ago

Love the quote from the PR flak, de Rocha, assuring everyone what was NOT said at a meeting she wasn't at. I can promise you if Corkins was there, it went down pretty much as Valentine said, and probably with a schadenfreude-eating grin on the former "education commissioner's" face ...

bd 4 years ago

like I said before someone call a WAAAAMBULANCE!

kernal 4 years ago

Angela de Rocha... "They didn't say anything like that". Wonder how she could actually validate her statement given she wasn't there.

deec 4 years ago

She has ESP-extrasensory post cognition.

vuduchyld 4 years ago

The headline on this article is kinda an afterthought. Sure, he's shocked about the Lawrence SRS office, but the real news here is the way Valentine was summarily discharged.

Welcome to Brownbackistan.

1983Hawk 4 years ago

Gotta love the irony of Corkins, maybe the most unqualified person for his former job (education commish) in state history, telling Valentine that although he had been doing a good job in both Demo and GOP administrations, the jig is up, the purges are here, and it's time for people who ate blindly loyal to only one wing of the GOP, regardless of their competence or qualifications.

Richard Heckler 4 years ago

The nazi state government is on the scene.

How would Angela de Rocha know what Corkins and Moreno said.

Meanwhile:

Sam Brownback is from the party that created 81% of the national debt under Reagan Bush and Bush. This means to me that he takes debt lightly no matter what so long as it furthers his political and religious ambitions.

His party is anything but fiscal conservative which is also reflected in the republican state legislature. These thinkers who adopt Koch/Walton/Norquist values are the economic giants of our time in managing state revenue. You will find Kansas number 19 thanks to the republican led state legislature.

25 States With the Highest Debt Per Person http://www.investinganswers.com/a/25-states-highest-debt-person-2395

In the end big debt and super duper bailouts were the results which does not seem to bother Republicans, as long as they are in power.

In fact, by the time the second Bush left office, the national debt had grown to $12.1 trillion:

  • Over half of that amount had been created by Bush’s tax cuts for the very wealthy.

  • Another 30% of the national debt had been created by the tax cuts for the wealthy under Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

• Fully 81% of the national debt was created by just these three Republican Presidents. http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2010/0111orr.html

gl0ck0wn3r 4 years ago

Merrill gets the Godwin award. If Brownback is a Nazi, does that make you Stalin?

lauraneville 4 years ago

As someone who worked for Dr. Robert Connell ( superintendent of LSH until recent firing) and closely with Greg Valentine on several projects for SRS, I think that I can speak to the fact that both were excellent superintendents along with being advocates for the mentally ill population in kansas...It has occurred to me that they were "let go" because of that very reason. From all appearances, it seems as if Brownback and Co. have an agenda to dismantle the mental health system in the state-along with undermining all services for the poor and disabled in general. This is not paranoid ranting--but real concern that there will be little remaining of the service network when the Brownback regime heads for larger pastures ( as in national pastures). It is not unlikely that the Department of Justice may be paying Kansas a visit related to Olmstead Act violations...just a matter of time! Laura Neville

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

That would be AWESOME.. regardless of the Lawrence SRS travesty, there needs to be some intervention for the mentally and physically disabled before Brownback (I was nice this time by not calling him out of his name) destroys everything that these people need and depend on. I have a close family member that works at Rainbow Mental Health, where they have already "downsized", and basically set up the 2 head facilitators who were fired. It looks very much like Rainbow will likely be one of the next facilities for the mentally ill to be shot down with Brownback's (man it's hard to say that name without disgust) agenda of line 'em up and shoot 'em dead politics!

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

Rainbow is especially in the line of fire because KUMED has had it's eye on that property for a very long time!

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

It's impossible to downsize administration when the administrators make th decisions. Slight conflict of interest here.

Alceste 4 years ago

What....Greg Valentine is in his 2nd, 3rd, or 4th career? I forget....I just remember he sure as all get out isn't a professional social worker....he "found his way" to the "calling" well into his working life.

Valentine finds himself in the very same situation he put a LOT of people....UNEMPLOYED....due to politcal non-sense and shenanigans. How many people did he have given the same message he had delivered to him.....get out or be fired?

This guy moved from running the Manhattan SRS office to running the KC Metro Region....jacked it up per his marching orders from the SRS secretary of the moment; and then was rewarded with the state hospital gigs. He's full of sour grapes and feeling the loss of income he himself laid on so many.

He signed up for politics and now has the gall to suggest politics are involved in his removal from office???? He signed up for this show. Cry baby. What goes around comes around. This man never did anything special and tended to play to the crowd. He too surronded himself with headbobbers while both in the KC Metro Region as well as with the state hospital: You don't think like me, you ain't getting hired. Good riddance to bad rubbish. Let him work as an entry level social worker and PROVE he knows what time it is.....his rapid rise wasn't due to having a stellar intellect relative to Public Welfare....it had everything to do with politics. Want to know more? Send me a PM. Good grief....what a little child.....

onewhoknows 4 years ago

Alceste clearly has a personal vendetta here. Perhaps he/she was also fired or disciplined? Managing requires tough decisions and within SRS, most of those decisions have to do with letting the dead wood go. Encouraging to hear that a state level administrator was actually holding state employees accountable. You don't hear about that very much!

chootspa 4 years ago

He - I believe it's a he? seems to only post a couple of variations on the same theme. "That person earned more than I thought they should." "That person qualified for a sweetheart legislative KPERS deal I don't like, so I'll ignore anything else they said." "The SRS is somehow an evil organization that ruins everything it touches."

I think that sums up every post he's made, and now you don't need to skim through all the rambling.

Alceste 4 years ago

Let me try to understand this "rambling" of yours, chootspa.....you think it's square business for hack legislators in Kansas to pay themselves on the back end of "serving" via a sweetheart deal they made for themselves relative to KPERS? They claim they "serve", but isn't really about getting paid....later on in life? So, chootspa supports same? shrug

Too, it seems that chootspa believes that the salaries afforded to a small fraction of Kansas "civil servants" who are "connected" is right and proper. Most curious. Curious indeed.

SRS is most certainly an "evil organization" relative to how it handles child abuse and neglect matters and child welfare matters. Methinks you've taken the time to really understand the way it's supposed to be done! "It's for the children, you know. Buy them a McDonald's ice cream cone on their way to B. Wayne Sims Kaw Valley Center. That'll ease the pain and suffering and HARM that we've done and make me feel better about what I'm doing....". Good on you, chootspa!!

chootspa 4 years ago

I think you're fixated to the point of irrationality on a few minor topics, yes. That's why most of your posts earn a TL;DR from me. Glad to be of service when you need another straw man argument, though.

Alceste 4 years ago

chootspa = apologist for the status quo shrug

Alceste 4 years ago

Incorrect.

The facts show that Valentine did EXACTLY what Brownback is doing...nothing more and nothing less: He surronded himself with head bobbing yespeople and embraced mediocrity. Too, Valentine was an aspect of the "cover up" that went on and continues to go on within SRS with respect to the destruction of children and their families by SRS "social workers" who circumvent federal laws year in and year out. Valentine was paid to keep his mouth shut as well as participate in the practices. The record speaks for itself, but simpletons refuse to read the data. "It's for the children, you know....". Uh huh....right...."ME FIRST!!" is the cry of the day is more like it.

However, the metaphor in place here, "dead wood", is pretty applicable to Valentine. Good for you, onewhoknows.....

Now, let's keep our collective eye on the real ball....and that's changing how SRS does business in the child welfare arena. Instead of bragging about "world class" and "being first in the Nation" (as in the privitization of foster care in Kansas which is only serving to pay B. Wayne Sims and Kaw Valley fat paychecks), why not use the energy to something right instead of "protecting" the 87 only?

Alceste 4 years ago

P.S., onewhoknows.....ain't it just grand that you can join this message board yesterday, July 27, 2011 for the purposes of making a singular post about a singular matter?!! Talk about sour grapes! Good one!

Anonymous LJWorld.com user since July 27, 2011. Send onewhoknows a private message (login required) Comments: 1 (view all or subscribe via RSS)

aryastark1984 4 years ago

Is Mario Puzo writing this stuff? What is Brownback's middle name, Corlenone?

bertwilkey 4 years ago

Today at a public meeting, Mr. Pedro Moreno, another Florida sidekick asset of the Secretary announced that patients going to and being sent to state hospitals, when they are dangerous to themselves and others, are "breaking the bank" and that the courts and professionals sending these people to the state hospitals for the safety of the patients and the community are "breaking the bank" for the state. He said he is going to talk to judges to tell them to stop doing this. He went on to indicate he didn't care that the cost of such dangerous patients would be shifted to community hospitals, jails, and communities; nor acknowledged the human cost of life. Nor does he acknowlege that funding to treat mental health in communities has been cut from 37 million dollars to 10 million dollars, though it is the fault of the communities that they are sending more people to hospitals. No wonder they fired the two state hospital leaders, who probably would not have put up with this non-sense. Moreno also revealed that the Secretary and his inner circle, first thing every day, get together to review the numbers of bad outcomes, tragegies, fallout, deaths, etc in their system....clearly to put spin on situations ( i.e. Great Bend foster care youth death). Frankly, I would rather they get together for prayer.......it would do much more good than their earthly actions.

chootspa 4 years ago

I'd ask a friend what she thought about the shortage of community funding for mental health services, but she's not around to ask anymore. They didn't have a bed available for her when she called, but I guess it's ok as long as she wasn't a fetus at the time of her death.

Alceste 4 years ago

"....shortage of community funding....." and yet broke Bert Nash purchases how many acres of land to do what? Right. Manipulate them numbers; count them beans in "creative ways"; pay yourself a fat salary....and then claim you is broke. Wonderful. Wonderful.

LH3867 4 years ago

Moreno is BAD news. Watch for the press coming on this political appointment. He has a BIG mouth and has no clue what he is talking about. He is an arrogant buddy of Siedlecki. He (Siedlecki) does pay for loyalty. They shall go down together.

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

What is so strategic about positions over state hospitals? And loyal to the secretary and the governor probably means more immigration from Florida. So now, the question becomes loyalty for what? Certainly, not for the state of Kansas. These people are from Florida.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

I'm shocked said Captain Renault in Casablanca. Would not someone fired by the current administration not be shocked at their actions? This is news?? Not much better than Fox.

Kate Rogge 4 years ago

Brownback is such a C Street Family tool. How on earth do we make sure he never wins another election in this country?

Terry Jacobsen 4 years ago

I wouldn't get your hopes up on that one. I predict he will be a two term governor with relative ease. Because regardless of all the name calling and seeing the devil in him here in Lawrence. Most Kansans know that you have to spend less than you take in, or the place goes belly up. These may not be popular choices, but they are tough ones that someone has to make. Most people in Kansas understand that, even if they don't like it

chootspa 4 years ago

Most Americans are fine with the idea of a tax increase in order to maintained valued services.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Yes they are - always of somebody else. No volunteers on here for the I don't pay enough tax club

chootspa 4 years ago

I seem to recall Lawrence voting themselves tax increases at least twice.

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

I hope that "most people in Kansas" will finally get the true picture about "spending". When you take state money away from the poor and give to the rich in order to promote your own selfish agendas, there is no savings. Besides that, I would like to believe that "most people in Kansas" have a much bigger heart and compassion for those with disabilities, at the very least. That's not to mention a bit of empathy for those that may have made a few wrong turns in their lives, or fallen into bad situations, and just need a little help to stand on their own feet again. I believe "most people in Kansas" are better than that, and will see that the current administration is a bogus, self-serving, mean and uncaring group who's Faith Bases Initiatives are anything but Christian values!

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Explain this one to me. If we don't spend money we do save it. Exactly what did we give to the rich??

It is not the "little help to get on their feet" that is the problem . It is the $20K per poor per year (that is just about the federal poverty level.) I guess with that kind of money there are no poor after we grant them all that care.

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

New employees hired by Seidlecki and crew at high dollar salaries.. and other $ spent on projects that are "corporate" driven!

George Lippencott 4 years ago

So that is what you mean by giving it to the rich??

OK, I understand your reasoning. I thought I missed some form of tax break.

johnnyreb 4 years ago

Faith Bases?? Are those the places where Christian airplanes land?

jafs 4 years ago

The con is that we're spending at least as much money on new administrative positions as we're "saving" on the SRS closing.

And, we have plenty of money for massive statehouse renovations, an expensive road project, and outside counsel for lawsuits.

It's about priorities, not saving money.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Good. Let us walk away from the state house project in the middle of it. Does not compute!

The rest - the cost of business. Your priorities are not mine.

As noted, the people of therest of the state that voted heavily for this administration will decide. They may just be enjoying the yelping from Lawrence - kind of like watching the neighboorhood bully get had.

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

Neighborhood bully??? UHHH.. I think you must be talking about old Brownie himself!!!

jafs 4 years ago

So you'd rather pay for new administrative positions and faith-based marriage initiatives than SRS?

That's interesting.

And, either way, the point is that we're not saving money, but people seem to think we are - it's a shell game.

If the state is "broke" and desperate to save money, then multi million projects like the renovation don't make any sense at all.

I'm sure many are pleased to beat Lawrence up - not sure why you'd think we're the bully in the equation though - it looks like the opposite to me.

Lana Christie-Hayes 4 years ago

thank you jafs.. I guess it seemed kinda obvious to me. Others may not be as well-informed!! (and that's just the tip of their giant iceberg!)

George Lippencott 4 years ago

jafs (anonymous) replies… So you'd rather pay for new administrative positions and faith-based marriage initiatives than SRS?"

** Well jafs I believe I have made it abundantly clear that I would rather pay for neither.

I support a social safety net but not the one that has evolved. If we have to destroy the village to save it (I guess I was part of thta once before) than so be it.

How about a reasoned dialogue about what we are trying to do with our social safety net, how we are implementing that goal anb how well we are achieving it? WE seem to avoid any discussion of that approach and revert to the you like idiot one if you do not agree with idiot 2.

jafs 4 years ago

Well, that's not an option right now.

My original point, which you have failed to respond to, is that this administration is claiming to save money, but in fact is just spending it differently. That means that people who are praising the administration for saving money are in error.

I'd like to see an honest discussion of this - if people are clear about their priorities, and would rather spend the money the way he's doing it, then let's hear them say that, rather than claim there's money being saved.

Destroying something doesn't save it - that's pretty obvious, isn't it?

Your last paragraph is a good one - I'd be glad to engage in that dialogue. In fact, I've suggested it in the past - we should discuss what kind of safety net we want to create, not how much money we want to spend. Remember that?

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Well form the standpoint of Mr. Sam we are saving money by reducing the SRS footprint. (period) WE are also spending money on intitatives I (Mr. Sam) expressed as part of my campaign. Since a bunch of you elected me, why should I not do that.

You see, jafs, it is only you and those defending SRS that see the interconnection as you see it. Others see it differently. I did not miss your point, I ignored it for what it is - diliberate misdirection. If a plane crashes in Chili and a butterfly flaps its wings in Kansas, they are not related because they happened at the same time.

Back to dialogue. Dialogue only can occur whan you do not try to redefine the motives or actions of your oponent. Mr. Sam's motives may be clear to you. But that is in the end only your opinion. Only Mr Sam knows if there is linkage.

jafs 4 years ago

I'm not imputing any motives to Sam.

I'm simply pointing out that we're not saving money by closing this office, if we're simultaneously spending that money on other things.

It's simple math - if we "save" $200,000 by closing the Lawrence office, and simultaneously "spend" $200,000 on new administrative positions, we haven't saved a dime.

We're just spending the same amount of money in a different way.

jafs 4 years ago

As far as public support, I'd very much like to see people understand what's going on, and not believe things that aren't true.

If the voting public prefers to spend money the way the current administration is doing, rather than keeping the SRS office open, that's ok - but it seems that people are falling for the "saving money" line, which is nonsense.

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

Yes, we should have a discussion about our social safety net and its goals. That would be a worthwhile exchange of thoughts.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

OK, as a starting point

Just what are we trying to accomplish with it

We can start anywhere that is just my suggestion. If we find that useful we should start to look up what the different programs list as their reason for being.

jafs 4 years ago

Generally speaking, I'd like for our safety net to provide help for people.

Ideally, it would provide temporary help for those who are able to become more self-sufficient, and permanent help for those who aren't able to do that.

Of course, in order for people to become more self-sufficient, there need to be enough decent jobs to go around, affordable housing, food, etc.

Alceste 4 years ago

Greg Valentine is "shocked"?

Man, I'd like to see the photo version/picture version of that kind of remark. Were there tears in the little boy's eyes?

LH3867 4 years ago

Alceste - you are just rude. Greg Valentine was an excellent superintendent. He did hold employees accountable and as a taxpayer, I think you would appreciate that. Did he fire you for not doing your job? thats the only reason I can think of for your bitterness. He was a very effective leader in SRS and well respected.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Perhaps it would be better if we did not politicize SRS. If you jump into the fray, you just may get muddy.

Alceste 4 years ago

nope.

Greg Valentine embraced mediocrity as if it were the Holy Grail. One prime example: Look who he CHOSE to hire to lead the Financial Assistance section of the KC Metro Region. Despite an internal "compliance audit", final version grossly sanitized to remove names and hard data, that individual who was a supervisor at the time was moved on up....just like George Jefferson and Weezie made it on up. That same report documented one obscene practice after another with respect to the internal workings of the offices which made the KC Metro offices (The Rushmore Report). Valentine did nothing about them.

Valentine was scheduled to spend all day in one of the little offices sitting with an eligibility worker to see how the job was actually done. He lasted less than four hours before he got up, proclaimed "This is hard!" and left. Still, he did nothing to ease the shortage of eligibility workers across KC Metro and, to the contrary, made it more difficult for these staff to do their jobs.

Want more examples of his embracement of mediocrity? Got plenty. Too, his collusion with Secy. of SRS, Don Jordan while Valentine was at that state "hospital" is an entirely different and even more damning underscoring of this political hack's inepteness. Oh....it worked for a time.....but once one embraces the political world....it can and does get dirty. He was unclassified staff. Wasn't such a smart move after all, eh? shrug

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

SRS - programs? Bert Nash - programs? KS Unemployment Medicaid Salvation Army Homeless shelter Health Care Access Social Security Affordable Health Care State hospitals Others? Just brainstorming.

Should we address state, national, or both?

George Lippencott 4 years ago

I will respond with a blod later (hopefully today)

Alceste 4 years ago

Moderate:

Do you understand from the previous posts just what a sham operation SRS is with respect to Public Welfare matters; child abuse and neglect matters; and foster care matters? Did you understand the reports I've supplied, or do you just choose to not bother reading them? All of this broo haa haaa over a singular office when the time is RIPE to change SRS as we know it to an actual public welfare agency.

The fact that SRS circumvents federal code and regulations which negates the states ability to draw federal funds to fund foster care services.....which means the state general fund (that's directly from you and me, by the way) must take up the slack is absurd. Blog about the rules violations and Kansas' abysmal record with respect to the destruction of families by the "progressives".

Remember, all the children who age out of foster care statistical FAIL in life and become financial obligations/burdens of the local communities where they end up. shrug

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