Written by Miami Today on December 6, 2012
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PAY STAYS: County employee names and salaries aren’t coming off the Miami-Dade website. The county commission Tuesday defeated a measure by Barbara Jordan that would have removed the names, leaving only job title, salary and employment start date. She raised the issue in November in an Internal Management & Fiscal Responsibility Committee, alleging that posting salaries posed a danger to government workers, especially identity theft. On Tuesday, Mayor Carlos Gimenez said he favored keeping the information online. "We’re a public entity… We want to be open and transparent," he said. "What we’re doing is the right thing." During the Nov. 14 committee meeting, Angel Petisco, director of Information Technology, told commissioners the website had gotten 195,000 hits since the information was made available in August. He said salaries were put on online as an outgrowth of legislation passed in January and a later resolution by Javier Souto that sought to make the salaries available at regional libraries. Ms. Jordan’s proposal said simply providing salary information without the employee’s work experience and educational background "fails to provide a clear picture of why such a salary is merited and is therefore misleading to the general public." The mayor said additional information such as start date would be added.
HOTEL BOOKING: Miami International Airport is launching proposals for a management firm to run its hotel. The Miami-Dade commission Tuesday approved a request for proposals to replace Tampa-based H.I. Development Corp., which manages the 252-room hotel. Aviation Director Jose Abreu has been trying to oust the firm for months. This year, a hotel employee was arrested for allegedly stealing $100,000. The request for proposals says a new agreement would generate $16.3 million a year gross, with net to the county of $4.8 million. "For the seven-year term, the hotel, related amenities and food and beverage facilities generate an estimated $114.1 million in gross revenues," documents show. H.I., founded in 1959, has been developing and managing hotels in Florida, the US, Central American, the Caribbean and Europe.
CATTLE CALL: Move over Art Basel, the Magic City is preparing to host the sixth annual Miami International Agriculture and Cattle Show from April 12-14, under a resolution the Recreation & Cultural Affairs Committee approved 4-0 on Nov. 13. Javier Souto, the committee’s chair, is the resolution’s prime sponsor. The event is usually at Tropical Park’s Ronald Reagan Equestrian Center, 7900 SW 40th St., and attracts 60,000 visitors from over 24 countries, according to the county. Last year’s show featured a cattle auction, equestrian shows and local agriculture vendors. Countries represented included Argentina, Brazil, Guatemala, Panama and Russia.