Suwannee Democrat

Home

May 21, 2014

Confusion at SVTA during transition

Board puts hold on comp time, reverts to 1983 manual

Live Oak —

The boardroom was packed with people during a two-and-a-half-hour Suwannee Valley Transit Authority (SVTA) Board of Directors meeting on Tuesday, May 13, as the board struggled to decipher which Personnel Policies and Procedures Manual they were operating under.

SVTA is being watched closely by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). FDLE would not state the nature of their investigation. An FDOT audit revealed that ousted Administrator Gwendolyn Pra received compensatory time payouts in excess of $86,000 on top of her $78,748.80 salary, and former Director of Operations William “Bill” Steele received over $36,000 in comp time payouts, aside from his annual salary of $71,427.20. FDOT Inspector General Robert E. Clift had stated SVTA’s cost accounting system was not sufficient “to make a precise determination of the sources of these payments.”

Pra took the reins of the troubled SVTA on Aug. 15, 2011.

Board members

Board members present at the meeting were Chairman Ronald Williams (Columbia County Commission Chairman), Commissioners Beth Burnam and Robert Brown from Hamilton County, Commissioners Ricky Gamble and Jason Bashaw from Suwannee County, Commissioner Bucky Nash from Columbia County, newly appointed Director Teresa Fortner, Board Attorney Hal Airth and Board secretary Shirley Cribbs.

Williams, according to past minutes, has served on the SVTA Board as far back as May, 1981. The rest of the board members are fairly new. Nash replaced Scarlet Frisinia on Jan. 14, 2013, Brown replaced Randy Ogburn on Jan. 14, 2013, and Burnam replaced Josh Smith on March 10, 2014. Bashaw began serving Jan. 8, 2014, replacing Phil Oxendine, and Gamble began serving Jan. 8, 2014, replacing Clyde Fleming.

Policies and procedures

Clarification on the policies and procedures manual that SVTA is operating under was questioned. It was noted by Gamble that there seemed to be several different versions of the manual. 

Williams said the manual that had been followed was dated March 26, 2012.

Text Only
Local News
Suwannee Democrat
Sports
Jasper News
Mayo Free Press
Arrest Record
VIDEO

Features
Meetings
Opinion
AP Video
Entertainment
Must Read
Business Marquee
Election 2014
AP Video
Ariz. Inmate Dies 2 Hours After Execution Began Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Raw: Funeral for Man Who Died in NYPD Custody Migrants Back in Honduras After US Deports Israeli American Reservist Torn Over Return Raw: ISS Cargo Ship Launches in Kazakhstan Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Former NTSB Official: FAA Ban 'prudent' EPA Gets Hip With Kardashian Tweet Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in the Netherlands Biden Decries Voting Restrictions in NAACP Talk Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's US, UN Push Shuttle Diplomacy in Mideast Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
House Ads
Facebook
Twitter Updates
Poll

The sales tax holiday is Aug. 1-3. Does this affect your back-to-school shopping?

Comes too late. Shopping's done.
Perfect timing.
Too early. Kids need supply lists.
     View Results