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Address

Mailing Address:

Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center
600 East 4th Street
Charlotte, NC 28202

Office Location:


Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center
600 East 4th Street
Charlotte, NC 28202

MAP

Hours: Mon-Fri 8 a.m - 5 p.m.

Contact

County Manager's Office
980-314-2900

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The County Manager's Responses to Your Suggestions

Welcome to the County Manager’s Suggestion Box. In the interest of being transparent, the County Manager implemented this service to provide residents and employees the opportunity to provide their feedback on County services and programs. Check back here each month for new responses. Many of the suggestions received pertain to specific departments. While respecting anonymity, the County Manager has shared those suggestions with department directors. Department directors will provide responses and follow-up actions as appropriate.

We cannot respond publicly to messages related to employee job performance or direct complaints of specific people or employees. If you have a concern about a County employee or an ethics/fraud complaint, please submit it to the Fraud/Ethics Hotline at 888-225-2039 for appropriate follow-up.

Visit the archived page to view previous responses.


  
July 2018
Question: Agency Visit
I suggest that Ms. Diorio and/or Mr. Townsend make a site visit at the local child support office. The last time we had face time with them was during the hack - it would be nice to have a meeting with them and the staff to be able to express any concerns and/or ask questions. Speaking from my own experience I feel I am not being heard by upper management and that our direct supervisors are able to "support" us only so far without ramifications. It would be nice to have a voice. Thank you.
I, along with Assistant County Manager Anthony Trotman, regularly visit Child Support Enforcement (CSE). Employee feedback is extremely important to both of us. Employees are encouraged to provide feedback through multiple forums such as Dine with Dena, Facebook Q & A session, Twitter page and other tools that I have made available for staff to stay in touch with me. The CSE leadership team also has an open-door policy that provides employees the opportunity to meet and share constructive feedback to help shape the important work of this department. Upon Joan Kennedy’s retirement, Assistant County Manager Anthony Trotman will serve as interim CSE Director and there will be a continued focus on employee engagement.
July 2018
Question: Write up
So we get written up and then receive an email from our director about having a positive work environment. I suggest Ms. Diorio make an appearance at the local CSE office to address morale and why we are looking for new positions within the county.  It’s a sad day when the issues and concerns of an organization falls on deaf ears.
See above response.
July 2018
Question: DSS is struggling
Are you at all aware of the chaos, agony, depression, stress and anger DSS, especially ESD workers are suffering through every day?  For the past five years the morale at this agency has gone down the drain. Employees are hurting with the amount of work load being expected to complete and to make matters worse a leadership team that does not know what to do to fix this problem. The DSS director herself has stated that the agency is in the best condition since she has arrived and that could not be further from the truth. The retention rate at the agency is laughable because not only do new hires quit within a few months of working but seasoned workers are all running towards the hill. 

Repeatedly workers and some supervisors have petitioned the "leadership" team for change but nothing has been done and nothing is being done. So many workers feel as if the leadership team is here for themselves only, to make rank, get paid and try to make themselves look good by acting as if things are fine in the agency. 

I STRONGLY, STRONGLY, STRONGLY encourage you to take a VERY HARD LOOK at the condition of DSS. 
Stop the train from going off the tracks before the brakes go out and it crashes.
DSS Leadership is aware of staff’s concerns and have been working to implement their suggestions.  Since many concerns center around the workload, I will start by addressing the actions that have been taken in this area.  ESD hiring managers have worked with HR over the past several months to strategically fill HSSI and HSSII positions.  Currently, ESD has 20 vacancies and all HSSII positions have been filled.
Concurrent to these efforts, policy training, mentoring and onboarding have all been revamped to address the retention issues that were mentioned.  As a result, the Economic Services Division’s year-over-year turnover and vacancy rates have declined nearly 5%.  See below:

Turnover
May
FY17

Turnover
May
FY18

Vacancy
May
FY17

Vacancy
May
FY18

Economic Services

18.07%

12.63%

12.10%

7.81%








As it relates to staff morale decreasing over the past five years, a combination of NCFAST implementation, vacancies, and significant volume from the ACA Market place attributed to the backlogs, which has impacted staff morale.
The ESD management team has also experienced increased pressure over the past five years, as the Department is now held to new timeliness and case processing standards.  The team continues to focus on meeting all federal and state standards, as our performance affects the overall performance of the state.
Some of the initiatives implemented to help morale have been various contests, jeans days and other incentives to encourage staff to work through the challenges outlined.  Due to staff
determination, mandatory overtime has ended and Medicaid is now on track in processing cases two months ahead beginning in August.
I’m very excited to share that a new ESD Director began June 25, 2018.  One of his first tasks is to do an assessment to determine if ESD has the right organizational structure in place.
July 2018
Question: IT Help Desk
I'm new to the County so maybe I have different expectations but how does the IT Help Desk close at BEFORE 5:00 PM any day (especially the Friday before a holiday)? The County's stated business hours are 8:00 AM to 5 PM; I guess not for IT staff. It is my understanding that staff monitors the Help Desk from home.  And they still don't answer. WHAT????? You'd think after the hack debacle IT Management would be doing everything in their power to instill trust with the customer. Maybe I will apply to work in the IT department. Seems like you don't really need any technical skills or customer service and you get to leave early.
The IT Service Desk hours are 7AM – 5PM Monday – Friday.  Representatives are available during County business hours.  The IT Service Desk does not close early before holidays and continues to offer full services to all County employees.  All Service Desk Analysts work from a central office location.  They are not remote employees and calls are not monitored or taken from other locations.  We apologize if you were not given good customer service.  We strive for excellent customer service and want to ensure that your needs as a County employee are addressed.  Again we apologize for any inconvenience and look forward to serving you in the future.
July 2018
Question: Policy Review-CSE dual notice/enforcement conferences
When an entire caseworker population and their supervisors get written up for not meeting policy expectations, when does it shift from a personnel issue to a policy issue? I invite you to contact Joan Kennedy/Fonda Clifton to get the details and circumstances around this recent write-up and also suggest talking with caseworkers and leads/managers alike. I suggest this write-up be dismissed, the said policy be re-evaluated (with caseworker input and concerns), as well as, the policy and expectations be explicitly outlined for FY2019. I impose that a formal training be held, allowing for questions and conversation pertaining to said policy. I find it hard to believe the entire generalist caseworker population missed the mark; there must be an underlying (or several) issue stifling our success. Please feel free to join us at the upcoming staff meeting being held at the child support office (June 8th) to address our concerns with this write-up. This recent occurrence is not only casting a shadow on the agency/management as a whole, but has drastically impacted the overall morale of our office. The job is already hard enough; being set up for failure makes this job only that much harder. Thank you for your time.

The questions raised are presumably about the Dual Notice initiative. To clarify, this is a performance standard that was first implemented in 2016 for Establishment cases and in 2017 for Enforcement cases. All supervisors were involved in the initial planning and determination of performance expectations for the Dual Notice Process. Prior to implementation, training was provided to all staff.
In February 2018 feedback was documented in the mid-year reviews of case management staff, including the Dual Notice standards. Line staff who were not meeting the standard of scheduling 10 conferences weekly received a Needs Improvement rating for that category.
Concurrent with the mid-year reviews, we noticed an increase in the number of customer complaints related to their case outcomes and expectations. In response to those complaints we implemented a three-month study to cover the period February – April 2018 to monitor required dual notice processing.  Staff were advised of the study. At the end of the monitoring period any employee who did not meet the expectations was given written coaching.  Any supervisor who did not assess and coach their employees’ performance also received a written coaching.  
Written coaching documents are not placed in employees’ permanent personnel files, but are maintained by the department.   After two years, a request could be submitted for removal from the department’s file.  However, the Director has agreed to remove the written coaching documents from the department’s file at the end of the fiscal year if the following applies:
• The case manager meets the year end goal by June 30, 2018 or
• The case manager’s caseload does not contain sufficient workable cases remaining to meet the year end goal by June 30, 2018.
Each case manager and/or supervisor is encouraged to discuss this issue with CSE leadership to gain a better understanding of this internal policy and to share their insights on how to improve the process.
July 2018
Question: Union
Working for the county - are we able to establish a Union to protect and speak on the workers behalf?
North Carolina law prohibits the County from engaging in collective bargaining with its employees or any union representing the employees or entering into agreements with a union.
June 2018
Question: Red Light Cameras and Panthers
Please do not approve red light cameras. People who run lights won't care Or pay the tickets. I see speeding laws broken everyday. Stop sign run. Please do not use tax payer's money on the Panthers... purchase, new stadium or whatever.
This response was provided by the Charlotte Department of Transportation. At this time, the City of Charlotte is not pursuing a red-light camera program. Charlotte operated a program from 1998-2007. The program was suspended since no funds outside of the civil penalties were identified to operate the program. Currently, state legislation for Charlotte requires that only 10% of the civil penalties can be used to operate the program and 90% must go to the school system. The cost to operate the program is greater than 10% of the penalties and no other funding source is currently identified.
June 2018
Question: Vending Machine
PLEASE, STOP PLACING DIET AND HEALTHY ITEMS IN THE VENDING. NO ONE EATS IT. WE WOULD LIKE THE OLD VENDING ITEMS BACK!

THANKS.
-DFS

The vending machine changes have been in line with the County Manager's message of health and wellness for our employees. Providing healthier food and beverage options at County sponsored meetings and events, and in vending machines on County property has the potential to:

  • Model and promote healthy eating among employees
  • Increase employee and some Mecklenburg County residents' access to healthy food options

In a survey in 2015, employees indicated a strong interest in healthier snack and meal options at work. To support employees in their efforts to lead healthier lifestyles, the Healthy Vending and Food Policy was created. This policy expands the healthy options available for food and beverages purchased, sold and served at County meetings or events and in our vending machines. Mecklenburg County's policy meets national nutrition guidelines recommended by the American Heart Association. Canteen is our current vendor and shows purchasing statistics of foods/beverages that are profitable and encouraging of people's choice of healthier foods/beverages.

June 2018
Question: Forcing People to Donate Relay for Life
We are tired of constantly being asked for money for County things. In our department, the Business Manager, who makes double what most makes will not stop stalking and strong-arming people to donate for Relay for Life. Every day she comes and ask and if we tell her NO she always wants to know why. Then we must debate with her as to why we don't want to donate. We don't want to donate because we do not make a lot of money. Maybe 10 or 20 is not a lot to her but that is lunch money for a child at school or gas. Hopefully, I don't get retaliated against for this because that happens in [our department] and she is one to do it. The department director allows her to do this and whatever else she wants. STOP forcing people to donate. Ask once and if we say NO then leave us alone.
We will ask management to make sure that employees do not feel forced to participate in these types of voluntary campaigns and that no retaliation will occur.
June 2018
Question: Sheriff's Department
I don't feel like a county employee while working for the sheriff's department. There are two different rules, Mecklenburg County HR rules and Mecklenburg County Sheriff General Orders rules. For example, you must work for the sheriff's department for two years before being eligible for a promotion. They deem it as a transfer whereas there are no set rules for regular Mecklenburg County employees. Supervisors are the worst and when you bring a complaint against one, hell rains down upon you. It's hard to work for an agency that doesn't work to foster growth from within.
The Sheriff's Office does operate on different policies than the county due to being under the directive of the Sheriff. With that said, General Order 17 states an employee who has completed two years of continuous service will be considered for intra-office transfer; generally this refers to going from a Detention Officer to a Deputy Sheriff. During orientation the Sheriff's Office sets aside a day to brief all new hires on the Sheriff's Office General Orders. Also, all employees are given a copy of the General Orders handbook in addition to being available online.
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Address

Mailing Address:

Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center
600 East 4th Street
Charlotte, NC 28202

Office Location:


Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center
600 East 4th Street
Charlotte, NC 28202

MAP

Hours: Mon-Fri 8 a.m - 5 p.m.

Contact

County Manager's Office
980-314-2900