Scottsdale is a wonderful place and has rightfully been recognized by many for effective city government.
But several years back there was a movement to import personnel from Phoenix, led by long-time Phoenix Planning David Richert who later became Scottsdale City Manager.
Richert was and is a fine man, but some of his hires well, not so much.
Some of these experiments, led by Paul Katsenses, were never culture fits. Unlike Scottsdale’s history they always seemed to be more interested in the journey rather than the destination. Talking takes precedence over performance, except when fighting for one’s own bureaucratic existence.
That’s the thing about city employees. They rarely get fired. They get reassigned, keeping their big salaries and pensions.
Most cities farm such personnel out to a water services department, or other such innocuous do little harm part of the jurisdiction.
Unfortunately, Katsenes was spun off to WestWorld where he is essentially the General General Manager, a real head scratcher because the current General Manager Brian Dygert is well regarded, even commanding a letter several years back from the property’s biggest users, stating their regard.
Rather than somehow aid the promise of WestWorld Katsenses has become its laughingstock, routinely wasting users time when he is not wasting the Scottsdale taxpayer’s money.
Fortunately, the relatively new City Manager has a stiff spine and seems without constitution to suffer fools gladly.
Let’s hope so.
Taxpayers win more when there is greater accountability for government workers, and a greater chance they can be fired, not simply farmed out.