Thursday, March 15, 2007

Political firing

Michael Horne looks at the decision to transfer funding for Milwaukee County job training from the Private Industry Council (PIC) to a new city agency being created by Mayor Barrett. He comes to the conclusion, it's all about politics.

So what are we to think when Mayor Tom Barrett calls for the abolition of the Private Industry Council in his State of the City address last month, and when Governor Doyle agrees in a letter today?

Barrett said he hired Donald Sykes, a former Milwaukeean, to study the creation of a city Office of Workplace Development to be designated as the area’s lead job-training organization, thus entitling it to ninety per cent of the PICs $14 million budget, and eliminating the job of PIC director Gerard Randall, Jr.

Barrett liked the study so much he hired Sykes to run the proposed agency. Isn’t this similar to how Dick Cheney became vice president?
Okay, that was a cheap shot at Cheney, but Horne comes to the conclusion:
The absence of any scandal, actual charges or material deficiencies in the operation of the PIC can lead us only to conclude that a good man was brought down for political purposes. There is nothing I have found to suggest otherwise. Maybe that’s why this city has such problems with job development and retention.

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