Audit coming to Miramar employment records

Commissioner Alexandra Davis wants to eliminate 'double-dipping' positions

By Bob Norman - Investigative Reporter

MIRAMAR, Fla. - The city of Miramar is hiring a human resources consultant to audit employment records as several administrators  retiring only to be rehired with large salaries.

"The first time I knew in detail about the situation was when you broadcasted it on your program that folks are being rehired at exorbitant amounts," said Miramar commissioner Alexandra Davis. "I was shocked. I was shocked."

Davis was referring to Local 10's stories about former city manager Robert Payton, who received a $2.5 million retirement payout.

Public Safety Director Mel Standley retired from the city Tuesday. He also retired in 2009 with a $70,000 pension, then was rehired at a $182,000 salary. Before joining the city in 2000, Standley also retired from the Hollywood Police Department with a $66,000 pension, bringing his recent taxpayer total to nearly $320,000 a year.

"How many times have you retired?" Local 10's Bob Norman asked Standley.

"Once. This is my second time," Standley answered.

"You retired from Hollywood as well, right?" said Norman.

"Yes," Standley said.

"So, this is your third time?" replied Norman.

"My second," Standley said.

When asked by Norman about his "triple-dipping" Standley said he had a right to work and that he was a "position to do that and that's what I wanted to do."

He said there was no culture of cronyism in Miramar, and that all pay was based on "performance." Before his interview was done, Miramar Assistant Police Chief Dexter Williams forced Norman and a Local 10 photographer out of the room where the retirement party was being held.

"This is a private organization," said Williams.

The city retirement party was held in the Sunset Lakes Community Center, a city building.

Davis questioned whether the public safety director position, created before she was elected, was ever needed.

"From the get-go that position was questionable," she said. "I'm going to do everything under my power and I'm sure the rest of the commission feels the same way to correct a wrong."

Mayor Lori Moseley released a statement about recent media coverage of the city, saying in part: "Having served the great residents and business community of Miramar since 1995, I wish to help clarify some of the misguided and flawed information you have been bombarded. I, too, am frustrated and desire to ensure that we make the necessary adjustments and continue to move our great city in a positive and progressive manner."

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