The founder of TexasTollParty.com shines a light on the dark corners of special interest boondoggles: Double tax tolls and Trans Texas Corridor tax, toll & debt schemes.
Wow..Seems the state has some power from beyond and had this pulled so we couldn't see amadeo squirm.
Grill him Lois! Yes! What a bastard he is. "Uh.. I don't know 281. I haven't been there in a while... (stall, stall)" Total asshole. Yeah, like he doesn't know. And if he truely doesn't he's an incompetent manager and must be removed. High ranking officials at my company know the technical details of our products, otherwise we'd be out of business. No tolerance for lack of knowledge, feigned or not, at the top.
Representative McClendon (San Antonio?) was seated in Lois (Brenham) Kolkorst's seat in this video. This video extract is much too kind towards Amadeo Saenz -- he did much worse against review and questioning of documented facts. Amadeo "testified" a third time near the hearing's end to refute another TxDOT foible violating legislative intent. I (Dan Jasinski) was an observing witness throughout this entire 13+ hour Sunset hearing. In my opinion, Amadeo warrants a minimum of firing if not prosecution for fraud, waste, and abuse of public resources.
Amadao. How can you sit there and state that you do not know how 281 is going to be handled. Every D.E. should be reporting plans to Austin for approval in their district. But as the saying goes the D.E. is king of his own kingdom and the don't have to answer to anyone. You know this as you were a D.E. but the fact is you should have seen all the plans on any major lane builds. They caught everyone lying and it is more damaging when you continue to play the stupid card.Amen Dan.
fyi: got youtube error message- says video is no longer available...
11:27pm,Try it again, youtube has been giving out error messages now and then, but it works now - I just tried it.ThanksSal
Sal,I just heard that TexDot has been caught lying to the feds. I have heard that on 281 in San Antonio that the feds are about to withdraw their approval because of TexDots actions. I think the head official in SA TexDot tried to cover up something and got caught on the toll road plans or on the environmental law permit from FHA. Please pass along to the attorneys to follow up on this.
Sal. Displaced TxDOT employees will need a Heading that will allow them to expose the underhanded deeds that the top TxDOT brass consistently issue out. Recently TxDOT D.E's had a thumb drive or portable drive with them that they used to show the new rationalization org. chart that Seanze has approved. They informed every body that they are not allowed to duplicate any portion of what was on the drives for any reason. Employees were only allowed to take hand notes of this new restructuring and the new org. charts. Seanze followed up approx. a week later with an e-mail to all TxDOT employees stating that the displaced employees will have an opportunity to cross-train for new jobs or MAY get assistance with relocating to any new position. The information on the portable drives stated that TxDOT will not assist in relocation. An employee had to re-apply for the jobs they already have and would most likely be re-hired at a lower pay scale. The information that CANNOT be reproduced is a 180 from what was e-mailed out and freely distributed. What was so secretive that nobody was allowed to reproduce ANY portion of those drive? Maybe more of that smoke and mirror s.
The Little Mexican general has not and will not be up front with the public nor his employees. He has instructed his staff to do the same. Now the public and his employees have lost favor with a once fine agency. This agency's brotherhood will have to be completely removed by the legislature to once again be on the road of truth.
This week the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) announced a plan to restructure the agency by consolidating TxDOT support services into four regional centers to be located in San Antonio, Lubbock, Fort Worth and Houston. This plan is supposed to save Texas 3.5 million dollars. I disagree. Instead, it’s my opinion that this plan creates another layer of management and bureaucracy. It creates new upper management jobs rather than much needed district jobs which would better serve the public.Inevitably, if put into action, Texas Department of Transportation construction and maintenance personnel will not receive the support and level of service necessary to build and maintain the Texas highway system. This in turn, will decrease the quality and degree of maintenance and construction provided for the public’s safety and benefit.This is occurring just as the Texas legislature and Sunset Advisory Commission is reviewing TxDOT’s performance. The plan does not in any form or fashion remotely address any of the six key issues and recommendations presented by the Sunset Advisory Commission.Rather than applying the commission suggestions, TxDOT seems to be instead passing the “accountability buck” from upper TxDOT management to its honest hard working ground troops.1. Why is this plan being implemented when TxDOT may be undergoing changes in leadership at the executive director or commission level?2. Why is TxDOT implementing this plan rather than taking action to address the improprieties committed by its upper management members, especially fiscal impropriety such as the misplacement of 1.1 billion dollars?3. Why has energy been exerted on this plan rather than developing and implementing one that addresses Sunset Advisory Commission recommendations?4. Why hasn’t the Texas Legislature been provided with an opportunity to determine if the plan is in the best interests of taxpayers?5. How will this plan better serve taxpayers rather than leaving support personnel in the districts where TxDOT maintenance and construction staff will be better and more quickly served and equipped to take care of the public and its transportation system. 6. Why has TxDOT held meetings concerning restructuring in secret and destroyed all meeting minutes?7. What type of business model if any was used as a basis for the plan?8. Was a cost benefit analysis developed which shows the costs associated with the status quo versus a restructured TxDOT.This has the potential to set TxDOT back significantly in the quality of construction and maintenance that it performs for the public. Ultimately TxDOT employees, those in the field not in Austin management, will be eliminated or forced to take a cut in pay. In the future, no one worth a damn will want to work for TxDOT and maintenance and construction quality will suffer, then the travelling public. TxDOT executive director Saenz is the governor’s yes man and TxDOT commission chair Delisi is his yes women.The TxDOT’s executive director and deputy executive directors should all be fired for mis-management. They are lying to the legislature, the public and TxDOT employees. Instead of holding the TxDOT upper echelon accountable for impropriety TxDOT is passing the buck to hard working blue collar employees.
This administration is not wanting to take accountability for the poor management of TxDOT. They claim restructuring will make TxDOT accountable, transparent, efficient any one that buys this is as incompetent as current administration. I can't believe sunset commission is allowing this to happen. In Amadeo's update to the employees of TxDOT his speech is a slap in the face of the hard working people. He says the department is under a lot of scrutiny and employees should not take it personal. Let me tell the little Mexican General we don't! you screwed up and you are passing the buck. If you were a man of character you would own up to your incompetence as Executive Director and admit you screw up along with your chief accountant. And start the restructuring at the top where the problem is. Let me give you an Idea why don't we start removing the redundant incompetence of some district engineer's why do you need 25 when 1 per region makes good business sense you could save a bundle, lets not stop there why do we need all the director's in a district? put one of each at the regional support center. and do the same to the divisions. You don't have to be an Engineer manage a business or agency Like TxDOT. We need more hard working people like you want to displace with restructuring. Let me tell you they can fix what an engineer screws up! But as usual the working people with common sense take the hit. the working force of TxDOT says about Amadeo FTP!!!!!
Well put, the both of you. TxDOT's plan of restructuring was put together by D.E's. and District Engineers are not business planners. They have no business planning this excuse of a restructure. Also it does not make sense that TxDOT's executive director is nothing more than a glorified engineer. If I need a pinic table drawn up I will call and engineer.You do not restructure a business from the bottom up when money has been misplaced or whatever excuse they have. You need to start where you are top heavy. If TxDOT keeps all 25 D.E's that 25 potential administrative mistakes. That is everybody he or she is over. You also have 25 different ways TxDOT "Interprets" it's directives. ( insert the video clip where amadao keeps stating "thats how our people interpreted it") For example: thus far two of the four regions have met with the interim regional managers (D.E.'s) and have at best, somewhat the same information. Again its what is interpreted. So no one really knows what it going to happen other than you will have to reapply for a job you already have at a lower pay.No one is sure why TxDOT has assigned D.E's to put this structure in place when TxDOT claims to be moving into a business structure. Again that is because they have no business background. Also why do district engineers favor the use of contract labor to perform almost all of the maintenance repairs needed. It has already been documented by TxDOT itself that contract labor WAS NOT a cost effective service during a two month study. This mentality does not save the taxpayers money. It only ensure that the top brass keeps his or her job. WHY DOES TXDOT PAY SO MUCH FOR ADVERTISEMENT. WE DO NOT SELL OUR SERVICES TO TEXAS, THEY HAVE ALREADY BEEN ESTABLISHED. WE BUILD AND MAINTAIN THE ROADS OF TEXAS. DUMP THE BAD INFOMERTIALS, LITERATURE AND SUBPAR DIRECTORS. TEXANS KNOW WHAT THEY HAVE ALREADY PAID FOR. YOU DON'T NEED TO ADVERTISE IT. TXDOT workers formed the first administrative offices. Somewhere down the line the administration had become tainted by engineers who could not draw their way of a piece of paper. Maintenance workers have always fixed what an engineer has broken and now while under the care of an engineer TXDOT has lost 1.1 million dollars and again the Maintenance workers will fix this.....With his or her job....You have earned a standing ovation Amadao.
Oh yeah......Amadao. You need write up two letters to fire two people. Send one to Bass and mail the other one to your self..........Here's a tip. Try to act shocked when you read. it. Thanks for taking care of your greatest asset.
I totally agree with the above statements and as one of the soon to be displaced workers I am worried sick about what I am going to do to feed my family. The economy is in no condition for any of us to go out and find a decent paying job lickity split. It just makes me sick to get called into a meeting with no prior notice and have our D.E. tell us about the regionalization plan and how they are going to basically cut support functions. The D.E. was "unable" to give any specific answers to any questions and this secretive presentation was not handed out to anyone and was only left on the screen for a short amount of time. This is not being transparent when you purposely hide information from your employees and you know answers to questions but choose not to be upfront. Is there a line in the pay scale that says when you must act like a politician. Shame on all the D.E.'s who did not step up and deliver the true message to the affected employees. Let us all hope it works out for the best...don't hold your breath.
"i don't have the schematics.." LOL!!! in other words: NO, the current free portion of 281 will NOT benefit from the overpasses and will be filled with stop lights in order to facilitate more traffic onto the tolled lanes, thus making TXDOT more money. now that was easy to say wasn't it Amadeo?!?!?!
TxDOT's restructuring plan is supposed to save 35 million. It actually will create at least 15 new engineering positions at an anuual cost of about $1,050,000.00TxDOT incompetence cost 1.1 billion. TxDOT leadership getting away with gross negligence and lying - priceless
Once again I must reiterate about Amadeo Saenz being good buddies with Chano Falcon. He has got the face of a shister just like his buddy. Saenz needs to be investigated by the Texas Rangers and the FBI also, as well as other top executives in the dept. Being that these two were in the Pharr District at the same time, I can't help but wonder the shady deals they conspired. He is still doing it but with greater power,as the executive director. The sunset committee needs to out way, whether we need more people in the offices or whether we need them in places like the maintenance sections and the equipment shops. It doesnt take a genius to figure out that these two areas are the ones needed to keep the hiways in proper working order.The hiway dept was built by field hands doing the work out on the road,not pencil pushers in the offices.People will lose positions in the equipment shops and in turn either the equipment will be sent to the region centers or they will go to a vendor which will cost the state and the citizens of this state alot more money.There will also be roving mechanics and welders which will use more gas or diesel getting to a project which will now be further. Let alone the time that it will take to get there and less time working on the equipment so that they can get back to their area by quitting time. Bottom line is the state will save money now, to appease the sunset committee,but in the long run will spend more, because the regional heads will be to far and there will be no supervision in the area I described,as per Medina, the district engineer of Laredo. He is also the interim sup. for one of the regions. We were told that the placing of people in positions no longer happens in TXDot, hence the good ole boy bullsh@#,and he was told that it still happens. He replied,not in my district. What a load of crap. In the ultimate end the top dogs will probably get away with everything and the little guys will end up being hurt.
the bigest mustake made by the highway dept phar disto highway dept is to come back chango falcon and benito contredas back to work for the highway department. the rats the 2 of they should be investiated by the FBI and the Texas Rengers. I was forsed to retire. i now abut the two gays.
It is obvious that none of you know Mr. Saenz personally. Amadeo is a man of character who I greatly admire. Have all of you forgotten that he has been Executive Director for less than a year. Everything that is going on at TxDOT and the beating they are currently taking is the result of Ric Williamson's arrogance and bullying. Let's not forget who put Williamson into power and left that power unchecked - Rick Perry. Mr. Saenz only inherited Williamson's mess and is doing his best to clean it up. It brings me great amusement to hear a legislature lecture someone on trust, accountability and responsibility - isn't that the pot calling the kettle black.The legislature should also remember that TxDOT's 15,000 (actually 14,000 since a self impose hiring "chill") employees are also voters.
Wow. Amadeo posts on my little old blog at 10:55pm (or perhaps that's his mom).: )Sal
I dont know sal. It could have been mr. david casteel who wrote that lovely post. After all he is a very big part of the problem with txdot. ask him how much of the 1.1 billion error he overspent.
Yes oh way to proud of amadeo guy, txdot employees are voters and we will vote for those legislators who step up and put txdot in check. It is obvious the heads of txdot only care about themselves and will throw the little guys to the wolves to save their asses. We didnt make the billion dollar error. It was the top of txdots food chain who did.
We are not talking about Amadeo and his wonderful personality. We are talking about the way you say he is trying to "fix" the problem you say Ric Williamson created... We are talking about the way he obviously does not know how to run an agency. Go ahead and think you know him so well and he is such a wonderful person. Maybe you will be next on his list to be axed.
Hey Sal I wonder if the Amadeo admirer is Chano or another one of his corrupt buddies that he has promoted. Amadeo is dishonest and disgrace to Hispanics of the great state of Texas. He can't define honesty and has lied to everyone, this type of leader ship is not acceptable. TxDOT should not be lead as he ran his previous district with the El Jefe mentality. If he is trying to clean up TxDOT then he should start in his own bed.
Your right. we have not PERSONALLY MET HIM. If I did, I would not put my nose up his ass. This is not a smart move no matter what he inherited. He knew what he was applying for when he applied for the job.
I, Dan Jasinski, DID PERSONALLY WITNESS AMADEO SAENZ CONTINUE HIS "INHERITTED" TxDOT ARROGANT DECEPTION CAMPAIGN AND MALFEASANCE NOT ONCE, BUT THREE TIMES DURING THIS SUNSET HEARING. I do not personally know this individual (I refuse to identify him as a "man" as that connotes some inherent esteem for which he has clearly forfeited by his actions if even only in his current promoted status), but just by his contemptible performance at this Sunset hearing Amadeo Saenz reeks of malfeasance warranting investigation and probable termination and prosecution.
TxDOT regionalization plan has good ideas and bad ideas. The problem is that the committee that is going to be discussing it is all hand picked, just as all of the interim directors are hand picked. No one was given the chance to apply for these positions, they just appointed who they wanted, and now these appointees are going to pick who they want and the lower level employees who actually turns the screw driver will have to compete for the job they have been doing for years. Each district should have someone from each effected department there representing them. Instead they hand picked a bunch of yes sir, yes maam people to agree with what they want to push thru. They really do not have a plan and are making all this crap up as they go. Nobody has actually came around and asked what I do, what my fellow co-workers do. These guys want to contract everything out because they think it makes "good business sense". One of the interim suck asses Tim Powers (not related to Austin) thinks that contracting out IT functions is a good idea because nothing ever breaks anymore. Yes he said this. He obviously is clueless and needs to be filled in on how much stuff really does break. Hard drives, power supplies, printers, plotters, UPS's, cabling, etc....they all break on a regular basis. This guy is a bean counter from the word go. Now when something as simple as a hard drive or power supply goes out on a PC the user will have to jump thru hoops and wait most likeley a few days or longer to get his PC fixed, instead of making one phone call to IT and getting an instant repair. The last printer repair contract that we used cost a flat one time charge of about $600 everytime they were called out. If it was a ten dollar roller they charged $600. If it was a $150 fuser they charged $600 bucks. We took it upon ourselves to do the repairs in house and have actually saved TxDOT loads of money by doing our own repairs and maintenance on our printers and plotters. This regionalization may save money and it may not but I know that customer service will be and absolute failure. Our fellow employees are used to getting great support and when they have to wait days for a response for things that we fixed within hours then they will not be productive, happy employees. Whatever happened to the old saying that "if you take care of the employee he will in turn take care of you". THIS MAKES GOOD BUSINESS SENSE.
I heard Tim Powers was a "Barney Fife" type - ya know - the one bullet in the pocket? Group 14 and under are gonna be the ones to suffer...no doubt about it. The DE's have forgotten that they started at TxDOT shoveling hot mix as summer hires. Now they are just about themselves. If I was making 7,000 a month, I bet I would have been able to put something in savings, but most group 14 and below I know, well, we already have 2nd jobs! TxDOT wants to call itself the "TxDOT Family" With a family like that, I think I'd be better off in foster care!
It pains me to see the honest hardworking individuals who epitimize hard work and integrity of TXDOT are the very one's to suffer for the lack of accountability & responsibility of Amadeo and his henchmen. Don't forget who was the Executive Director before Amadeo. He too had a heavy hand in this fiasco.
Concerning TxDOT's grand restructuring meeting held this week in Austin....be advised. I went, I saw, I heard.....the same old crap. We were supposed to be there to contribute but instead found out that management already has there own plan. We're strictly here as window dressing so management can say "this plan was developed with the cooperation of our employees". Anyone who expressed the slightest bit of doubt or a dissenting opinion was dismissed. And...yes Tim Powers is a snivelling, brown nosing, runt, lacking inteligence and a moral compass (this seems to be a prerequisite for upper TxDOT management). By the way at the start of the grand meeting management informed as that their mantra was "don't tell us why this can't be done,,tell us how it can be done". For those of us who are tired of upper management's rhetoric...they should know that our mantra is "kiss my ass".
Tim Powers stands to make a lot more money when he heads up the newly formed "North Region". He is only interim now but he will get the job and will get a fat raise, mark my words. He does not know the first thing about what anybodies job entails but yet this seems to make him qualified to head up this five finger knuckle shuffle he calls "Regionalization" . He will, over time, start to slowly shit can peoples jobs as he figures out ways to contract things out. He has said he is looking at ways to outsource using break/fix contracts, etc. Why? If you have people in house use them. Give them a little training and allow them to flourish in there job and use them to there fullest potential, you might be suprised at what you get out of them. Maybe a hard working, loyal employee. Make good business sense Timmy?
That's the bully tactics TxDOT management uses. As stated above "don't tell us why this can't be done,,tell us how it can be done" AND "Anyone who expressed the slightest bit of doubt or a dissenting opinion was dismissed". THEY WILL DISMISS YOU IF YOU EXPRESS ANYTHING OTHER THAN WHAT THEY WANT TO HERE. They will bully you, hold you back from advancing the ladder or whatever they can to put you in place. As Mario Medina told us in our meeting " it's not the work your your that's the problem. So keep it up and help me help you." So we are supposed to make this work so that can finalize this plan and put us out of work....No wait. That will be our choice if we don't work there any more. As Mario put. But if i get absorb in the disstrict for the reason that my job was cut than that was not MY decision. Also I will be at the bottom of the ladder in a group that I am not skilled at. But as mario put "this will give you a chance to climb that ladder". HERE ME MEDINA. I ALREADY DID CLIMB THAT LADDER........Keep your Dr. Phile wanna be lines to your self. TxDOT has failed to give the taxpayer the product that they have paid for. TxDOT has failed to provide lawmakers honest answers and they have failed a department all together. Maybe this is a blessing in disguise for me. I thought that I was hired by a department tat sood for intgrity and honesty. But this ended out as a joke.You Amadeo have failed in more than one way. You stood as assistant executive director when our previous director ran this department to the ground. You could have intervined at time if you really stood for Honesty, transparancy and efficiency. Your actions than are the same as now.
Now that state employees are to reapply for their own jobs and the possiblity of being bumped if someone submits a better resume than theirs, well, why not take it all the way to the top and have Amadeo reapply for his job, I am sure some out there is better qualfied than he is and bumped him off his job. What is good for the goose should be good for the gender.
Who really benefits from toll roads? Not the tax payer that is for sure. So, who really does then? Let's see. When the contract expressway is made it is made to attract the tax payer to use it, How? Well, if TXDOT can put enough stop signs, traffic lights, and detours on the service drive road then, the tax payer will get frustrated and pay the toll to avoid the frustration. They have been doing this for years but, it's a state secret. Until now that is. So, who really benefits from all this? It does not take a rocker scientist to figure this one out.
I predict....Armadillo Saenz arrest for accepting bribes and committing fraud, a commission elected by the people and a TxDOT left in shambles that no one will want to work for. Thanks Prick Perry we'll see ya outin 2010.
Now were really confused Amadeo???? Here is a memo released late Friday, August 15, 2008. Wow, what a roller coaster ride. Makes it kinda hard to function when you are constantly given misleading, non-specific information. As an employee with no brown nose buddy connections high in the chain we get all our information from those directly involved in the restructering movement. What the heck are we to believe. Can PIO not do a better job of giving specific information to employees rather than this blah, blah, blah, blah crap below. Someone get specific. This memo answers NO QUESTIONS. We were all led to believe just the opposite of what is said below. "This message is a follow-up to my July 18, 2008 memo to all TxDOT employees regarding the agency's restructuring efforts. It is my intention to address employees' concerns and correct some of the misinformation that is circulating about the restructuring process.I will start by addressing the concerns that have been brought to my attention. Many employees have heard or believe that all the employees affected by the restructuring effort will have to apply for a job with the department. This is not my intent and is not the direction we will go. No one will have to re-apply for their own job. To the contrary, our goal is to minimize the impact these changes will have on our employees and their families. The Interim Regional Service Center Directors, Human Resources staff and the Assistant Executive Director for District Operations are still developing plans that address staffing requirements for each regional service center, as well as the method for staffing those positions. Once they are complete, the plans will be posted on Crossroads so that all employees can review and comment on them. I want to stress that these plans are still being developed and will not be finalized or approved by Administration until after you have had time to review and comment on them.In addition, I understand that many of you believe you will have to physically relocate to another office to keep your jobs. While certain staff positions may be required to work on-site at the regional centers, we will use technology to create virtual office assignments where feasible to provide opportunities for employees to perform their duties from their current job locations. While a major goal of the restructuring effort is to improve the efficiency of the department's operations, we will try to keep the impact to TxDOT's employees and their families to a minimum.It has also been brought to my attention there is a misunderstanding that we are already implementing plans for the district/regional restructuring model. This is not true. There will be no implementation until the plans are shared, finalized and approved. Interim regional directors are working with other managers and staff to develop and refine plans. I will not approve or allow implementation of any plans until you have had an opportunity to review and comment on them.Finally, I want to stress that if further restructuring is approved, it will occur over a timeline that allows for the smoothest transition possible with the least disruption to our staff and workload.As I have indicated in previous memos and my video presentations, I am committed to providing each of you with as much information as possible on this and other TxDOT -related issues. Please look for additional information that will be posted on Crossroads in the coming weeks. If you still have questions or want to make a suggestion, please send an e-mail to www.AskTxDOT.dot.state.tx.us."cc: Texas Transportation Commission Administration
Odin Say'sAAWWWWWWW.....he sounds so sincere. Either he full of it or the stupid interim DE's cannot read simple instructions. This is exactly the opposite of what we were told......OR maybe bad publicity is getting to them.......Well see.......
It kind of feels like we are being led to the showers only to find out that we are being exterminated. No, if it sound too good to be true, it's because it is. He is a very good lier. maybe is just me, but, I do not trust Porky Pig or the Troll and some may say.
TxDOT employees are actively jumping ship as I speak and I know of many others including myself who are applying elsewhere. How can you expect people to just sit back and "concentrate on the job at hand" when you have chaos all around. Holy crap it is like the only thing missing is the Benny Hill theme song playing. Maybe they want everyone to leave??? Sure is gonna make it hard to get things done when you just pissed away the only people who new how to do certain jobs within TxDOT. Screw it lets just outsource it! Job well done Armadillo.
Sal, would you do us all a big favor and repost this for August. The comments are very true Amadeo and his interim managers can's get on the same page it is very obvious that he can't be truthful even to the working people of TxDOT. Does he think we are that stupid to believe this memo he sent out on Friday. this was not the way it said to us in the meetings that affected the personnel that would be part of regionalization. This Asshole is out of control and should be removed from his position. including the commission who is apparently backing him on this restructuring plan. All the people that are backing this will pay when it comes to the elections as it is apparent that no one is asking any question on who came up with this plan they are as incompetent as the bum ass that made the 1.1 Billion dallar error. Rumor has it that Amadeo knew about this and let it go, I guess he thought that no one would catch the hidden agenda that they had. The regionalization effort is another one of his hidden agendas to get him back in good standing with the SunSet commission I hope they are not buying this Amadeo is a crook and a lier!!!!!!!!!
WOW!!! You all have a lot to say - is anyone listening? I just retired - and although I'm not as worried as most of you, I am just as pissed off. TxDot was a great place for 25 years but we've all seen it going downhill for a long time now. Face it - TxDot a huge political pawn. I could see this coming when Perry decided to use it as his "legacy" by creating the TTC. Keeping up with transportation in a state of this size is no easy task,and now we are reduced to this chaotic situation with a bunch of political hacks and self-serving idiots in charge. I wonder if Perry realizes how horribly he's screwed things up? I agree with the 07/24/08 post which says that ultimately this whole mess should be laid at his doorstep. Granted, this administration is a JOKE, but who hired them? And the previous one for that matter? The only course of action is to keep writing to our legislators and HOPE that someone, somewhere has the intelligence and integrity to get TxDot back on track. And do it immediately - this "CYA restructuring" plan of theirs has to be stopped before TxDot comes to a grinding halt!
Why the hell is the management at TxDOT trying to make such a drastic change without any kind of plan in place. This has got to be the biggest running joke (internally speaking). This is a good old fashioned cluster F##$. First you are told that your job is most likley going away and that you will have to apply for pretty much the same job you have been doing all along with most likely a cut in pay(if you have lots of time in at TxDOT). Now my brother Armadillo is saying it is not true that we will have to apply for jobs and that what the interim chiefs went around and told all TxDOT employees was just a cruel joke. Who the hell is pulling the strings around here Beavis or Butthead.
I am a current TxDOT employee. I used to be proud to say I worked at TxDOT. I can't say that any more. TxDOT is now know as a renegade agency..untrustworthy..arrogant etc. I hope that people remember that there are good hardworking, honest people employed at TxDOT. They are not the ones who have tried to shove TTC and toll roads down Texans throats. We have continued to do our jobs through all this bad publicity. Now we are being rewarded by the regionalization plan of Amadeo....and anyone who is not an engineer is in danger. Many were told they would have to reapply for their jobs and possibly take a cut in pay. You can bet no one with a P.E. after their name has heard that this will affect them. Many hardworking, loyal employees have been on an emotional roller coaster these last few months.
As a TxDOT employee, I can honestly say that this agency has been run badly for a while. As the old saying goes, it we were a business, we would be out of business. I do not necessarily believe that Amadeo (Armageddon) is all to blame. I believe that this agency has been very political for way too long and they think they control the purse strings for highways that are being built instead of the taxpayers. What concerns me the most about this reorganization other than losing my job is that what will happen to roads? If you live in a rural area, good luck getting a road built in your town but those in big cities as we were told will get all the big bucks. So you people out in the sticks, beware because you will be driving on dirt before long if TxDOT gets what they want. And as far as this flip flopping on whether we do or do not have to reapply for our jobs, no one knows. I just hope that someone out there is listening and can help us.
If you can. Take a look at the letter to the editor to the Victoria Advocate. Monday 08-18-2008. Victoriaadvocate.com. Hits home with TXDOT at atime when they don't want to hear it.
Is there a State Auditor report due out on 08-25-08? and can the previous administration be held accountable for what is happening and what happened?
State audit means squat. They all cover themselves with the same sheet. As a golden rule in the business world goes when it comes to managment presonnel " if you screw up, you move up." that is in ln the business world only, and should not apply to a state agency who uses tax payer money to provde a service. If these clowns want to play, then, they have to leave TXDOT and work for a living in the private sector. I have seen corrupt managers get away with murder. And the only justice to their crime is retirement. And only to be replaced by someone the same or at times worse than they were. Managemt in TxDOT is a hand picked secret society.
I would tend to agree. An audit would be a complete waste of time and taxpayer money. Nothing would happen. TxDOT simply needs to stop feeding taxpayer money to corporate giants like IBM and CDW who do nothing but over charge the state of Texas for goods and services that you and I could get for 50% less in your local area. We are forced to purchase items from certain vendors because they have a state contract. Here is an example. Lets say we need to purchase a repair kit for a laser printer. I would research the product needed and try and find the best price possible and then pass the information on to our purchasing department. Purchasing would buy it using the CDW contract, at an outrageously inflated rate, rather than from another vendor at nearly half the price. Same procuct, but a huge difference in price. I cannot count the times I have researched online to try and find the best price possible for a needed product or part only to find out it was purchased using a vendor contract for almost twice the amount. It happens everytime. It is just like when they used to say a government screw cost $100, they were not kidding. How this kind of stuff goes on just baffles me. I guess I am just naive to think that we as an entity for the people would have the common sense to do the right thing with taxpayer money. :(
"don't tell us why this can't be done,,tell us how it can be done". If this wasn't a David Casteel quote I bet he had something to do with it. I've personally heard his thoughts before and this smells just like him. It is said that he has a plaque in his office that says something like "if it aint broke then break it". Of course that is so HE can be the shinning star that "fixes" it ! We are all in trouble until someone puts him back on his chain ! Amadeo is on the bus alright but David is driving. I was told that members of the Sunset review team were present with a TxDOT employee and were advised of what is going on. They were astonished and commented that "that is not what we recommeded". KEEP YOUR CONGRESSMEN INFORMED !! Many do not know what is going on !!! 0h, ya, you want to know about waste.. just ask a TxDOT employee like the previous poster and that's just one small example. We little guys could actually save the $35 mill not just redistribute it to upper salaries.
If anyone with the ability to make a decision really wanted to save money(tax payer money) then they would see from the above posts that the contracts that TxDOT has is killing them. If a politician wanted to make a name for himself he would quit kissing the corporate ass and start putting a stop to the UNLIMITED CORPORATE CASH COW known as TxDOT. We have a friggin contract for everything. Do the math people, well in this case you better contract it out to a qualified CPA. :) Where are the politicians, legislators, sunset, Armadillo. Get control of the stupid contracts!! U SOFA KING WE TODD DID!!
As a former TXDOT employee with purchasing experience, the system was broken and still is, from what I gather. During Hurricanes Rita and Katrina the restrictions were lifted and we were able to use our personal judgement. Sure we spent money, but not nearly what we would have, had we had to go through the contract process. The work got done and the workers in the field were taken care of. So now it is time to throw the management to the dogs and let your representatives know what is really going on. Management has failed and will continue to fail if we just sit back and take it. It is time to let everyone know what is really happening. Amadeo should be the first one out the door.
As a current employee of TxDOT I see waste almost on a daily basis when it comes to using contracts to purchase items or get equipment repaired using a contract. I constantly go over in my head ways I could buy or do the job for less. I even research prices just for kicks to see how much cheaper I can get it without the contract. I see first hand what the contract charges TxDOT for goods or services and like the posts above just wonder how it can go on. It is basically legal theft. If the working people of TxDOT, more specifically the support people, can see the obvious waste with these contracts how come nobody else can. All we can do is sit back and take it because nobody wants it to change and nobody listens to the little guy with no money. Dirty politics.
Today 08/27/08 at 2:00 PM is the day the fantastic 4 will be sentenced in Federal court in McAllen. The invisible girl is the contractor who fingered them. The Thing is the big supervisor. Elestic man is pretty boy. And the torch is the Hot heaD.
Big government equals to Big waste. When the Districts operated indipendently it was more economical, and now, TXDOT wants to run it like the federal government but the state of Texas does not have a bottomless pit like the federal level so, we can go broke in a New York minute. We have gone from saving money to wasting tax payer money. For the last four years equipment was purchased with the attitude "use it or lose it" it does not matter whether it was in need. And then if that was not enough we went and spent the following year budget and no one squeaked, well, that is a green linght so, we went and spent the next following year budget and again nobody squeaked. So, all the districts were going nuts spending. Now you knon where some of the 1.1 Billion went to...
Well, how come we are not hearing anything about the "BIG" regionalization plan anymore? Sounds like things in the northern region are still a go but our "little" buddy Tiny Timmy "Powder Puff" Powers seems to be making his rounds under the radar, real hush hush like. People are jumping ship and if they do not tell everyone what they are planning on doing there will be plenty more people leaving. Some people that are leaving are very intelligent, and well respected employees of the state with a number of years of there lives dedicated to the department. These guys will be hard to replace but I guess thats ok to a numbers guy like Tim "sukass" Powers. AS long as he gets his "fat" paycheck he could give two shits about the rest of us.
I am one of the few fortunate ones that was able to bail out. And you are right, they do not care to lose people with experience. Its cheaper to operate with inexperience; deam on. The new are not as dedicated and do not plan to stay for long, so, they will always operate with inexperience personnel at a large expense cost due to their lack of experience but, who cares as long as the numbers on paper look good, right?
I will totally agree with you. I have also seen some pretty good employees jump ship. I am talkin some educated, sharp individuals who liked what they did but could no longer put up with the ASSphalt TxDOT was shoveling. How anyone who calls themself any kind of a director or manager could allow this to go on just boggles my mind. But yes, when the FTE's drop so does the payroll...it all looks good on paper. This is all part of the plan. Let them thin themselves out!!
After I retired due to TXDOT ways "to do more with with less attitude" and "simon says" non-schedule mentality, I feel like a great burden has been lifted off my shoulders. I came close to biting the bullet a few times until I decided that it was not worth the trouble. Now,I get paid not to work and I just love it.
Some employees follow polices other think policies do not pertain/apply to them. Some employees feel that sonority over rules policies. Not so! This is a state agency where policies need to be followed. You get paid to do a job right not to sit on your ass or be a _ucking liar. Now, Who gets paid to do nothing or to be told how to run business on a day to day basis? You need to earn your money.Get rid of the rotten apples. New apples are better apples.
The latest "leak" from inside txdot (i am a current employee) is that Saenz sent an approx. 450 page document to all DE's and told them to go over carefully to make sure they were not breaking any laws as for as labor was concered and HR. He keeps saying they will not do anything without imput and that is a bunch of crap. Barton and Castell will kill each other to get to the top.
I filled many surveys as to the status of TXDOT and I was surprised that prior to the last time the district engineer said that they had recieved a bad evalution. So they had a class for management on ethics and then three management employees were caught on a sting operation where they pleaded guilty as to taking a bribe. And we have not recieve the finding on the last survey, it seems it vanished into thin air. But you know what it is? They do not like to hear the truth. The turth is out there. But they have no idea on how to deal with it. And how to take care of their own. For several decades management has operated under deplomatic immunity under TXDOT.
I've been told TxDOT has allowed individuals to be hired without thoroughly checking the veracity of their stated education levels, and used those misleading "higher educational" (master, doctorate, etc.) qualifications to gain a job or a promotion. Any truth to this?
Policies are written to make TXDOT look good but they are seldom followed. You are not supposed to drive a vehicle without brake,tail lights not working but, your supervisor orders you to. He over rules policy because he controls your raises. Policies are good if they are followed; you are not supposed to carry alcoholic containers in your vehicle but, since you are the watch dog, who will question you?
The sunset committee sole purpose is to protect management wrong doing staring from the very top and so far, they are doing a good job at making it appear like they are really looking for the problem but, the questions to management are very soft and polite. That way they may say. We did try but, could not find any fault. The sunset has become another obstacle to the problem. They are not going to make management look bad why? Because they most likely have also skeletons in their own closets. And they are not about to hang themselves. We need the federal government to run the sunset committee or state representives but not TXDOT personnel. If any justice is to be done.
Amadeo will be out of office by the end of the year. If not, the sunset committy is a sham. A paper tiger that is design to make it appear that they are doing something about it, but, they are not.
As per my experience with TXDOT when it comes to justice, it has come 100% from outside TXDOT. TXDOT is unfair and uncapable to bring justice when the wrongdoing comes from the management side. They drag their feet to act until the focus fades away. Only direct action from lawyers who represent employees, or the F.B.I. have been able to bring justice. To wait for TXDOT to act is like the worst thing to hope for because they will just cover it up to take care of their own. Is like asking Alcopone to punish his thugs; it is not going to happen.
TxDOT Public Transportation Division is being run like a dictatorship. The Exec. Director has his own agenda and makes all decisions. No public input, he doesn't involve members of the Public Transportation Advisory committee or the transit providers or the district coordinators. His decisions are not based upon meeting the needs of Texas transit. Now, it appears that TxDOT administration is allowing the Public Transportation Division (PTN) to take total control over the district field public transportation coordinators. Where is the Sunset Commission when you need them. Did they not investigate this division when they looked at TxDOT highway departments? That's one of the main problems too - TxDOT highway department doesn't closely watch what all is taking place at the Public Transportation Division. They place their trust in one - division director who tells them one thing then does the opposite.If this centralization is implemented - then there goes any and all transparency and accountability...guess nothing is lost since it wasn't there to begin with anyway. Legislators please look into this division. You will find that projects are selected for funding without justification. What a waste of our taxpayer dollars.
Now that regionalization is taking place employees are losing titles left and right but they will continue with the same work load. In the San Antonio region which covers a number of districts there can only be one region engineer which will replace the district engineers. One region manager will replace management positions at the districts level. Accounting, right of way, human resources, sign shop, mechanic shop, etc.... And this is happening now.
The first Monday of every month the Pharr district has a safety metting and afterwards any concerns will be voiced at that time. With the situation the way it stands the concern has turned this March into a ratten session where they are are at each other's throat trying to justify their position by making other employees look bad. Instead of making things better they focus on the apposite.
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