Tough Questions Already for New Superintendent.mp3

Charlotte at Six
Thursday, July 6th

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

We start tonight with questions raised about Charlotte's new school superintendent. And the big salaries he's giving to people that he worked with and Merrill and then he's bringing south let him. But Clayton Wilcox visual here defended the move today telling me he stands by his decisions. Some county commissioners however raising their eyebrows. Because Mecklenburg County taxpayers will shell out more than a quarter of a million dollars just for one married couple to work at CMS just. Not the way that I would won't want to sort all. Join me they're going to be fifty response we're Cleveland state of the county's money. That's county commissioner Jim Puckett says he was stunned to learn what Laura Francisco will learn as the chief of staff for CMS. Francisco worked for superintendent Clayton Wilcox in Maryland Wilcox has said he needs are here in order to be successful. And she will be paid well. 175000. Dollars a year that's 40000 more than the previous CMS chief of staff made. It's more money than school superintendents make in 85 a north Carolina's 100 counties. And to compare. Laura Francisco's salary is only 4000 dollars less than the chief of staff at the White House. It's even 31000. Dollars more than the governor earns. Should act I mean is it that the bid. Kind of a loaded comment that I I think. I had a chance to ask superintendent Wilcox about that that's a lot of money for. An assistant isn't it. Well I issued more than an asset that we had billion dollar organization we have 191000. Employees went over your 160 locations I don't think it's unreasonable to have the chief of staff who could help chief operate to help me the superintendent. We make sure that they schools run well I I know that people be very critical it we've missed the opening that we missed. You know having our course our bosses say it takes people who run big organizations and I I guess that some who have never run big organization and make him watch too much but I I would just respectfully disagree. Commissioner Jim Puckett says he's not buying that. Different things more than the government out of government would. There is full time jobs clearly you have been brutal way Avalon fired tear just try that senate salary and a bolt for the problem what we've also heard her husband. That's true Laura Francisco's husband Jody who was a chef. Is getting a job for 85000. A year with CMS. Jody Francisco well among other things tried to make school food taste better. But the position was not created for mr. Francisco it it was created. The result of me spending a great deal tartan a bit straight didn't look into that great member community folks both addressed the board at meet privately. About the district's responsiveness. To commit dietary concerns of kids. About the way we address some of the projects that will school gardens or Shamu locally generated gardens. I really thought that. Until he Francisco had the skill set to address those things but I still did not create the jobs for haven't. All I created a job to address those things and then placed Jody enact. I guess there's this public perception by some that DP you know it was okay I want to get his wife to move song give a husband a job. Well I mean that and that adds I think that's the perception that some people hold but it just I accurate. But commissioner Jim Puckett says hiring Jody Francisco rarely won't accomplish much of anything in school cafeterias or gardens. I can't imagine that that's not a built plus job this does sound like a package deal. None cult figure this couple banned what an awful lot of money. For a brand new people couldn't trust them. So 85000. Dollars for shaft Jody Francisco. 175000. Dollars for his wife the Francisco family will earn. 260000. A year. Just over a quarter of a million dollars from CMS so if there's some taxpayers at they're going wow he's paying this couple. Our quarter of a million dollars to come work here is that worth that what would you say. Why would help. I mean they allowed to get a I think there's a bit loaded back I would say this is that I'm bringing two people had for distinctly different duties. And yet when he had their salaries up it is a big number but in reality has been linked to completely different jobs. They're needed within the system. You know I don't know how different that would be. Looking at perhaps another principal couple that works in this district far. Perhaps. You know somebody who works you know and another industry. And doctor Wilcox says some members of the school board warned him privately than hiring Francisco's husband would look mad but he says they approved it. Andy stand by the decision and even told me he's wide open willing to come on WBT any time and take questions from listeners.