Copy and Paste: Could It REALLY Be That Easy?

Former WoMBat amigo Brian Hazelett has made an issue about the City’s lack of an employee manual, and why can’t the Lorain Admin simply copy and paste one from another city?

Personally, I didn’t think this was an ethical thing to do, because the City obviously put some time into the production of the manual, and to have someone else come along and pilfer it and use it as their own sounded wrong.

So, in an effort to see if Lorain really could copy/paste, I emailed the Mayor of the City of Findlay:

Mayor (Pete) Sehnert,

I’m sorry to bother you but I need you to answer a simple question for me. I live in the City of Lorain. Mayor Tony Krasienko mentioned over a month ago that he was surprised that the City of Lorain did not have a handbook for its employees, and announced that one would be drawn up for them. One of his critics has been doing a ‘handbook countdown’, waiting for the completion of this manual. When told it may take some time to pull one together, this critic stated ‘all someone has to do is copy/paste one from another city.’

What would your feelings be, as Mayor, if you found out that someone copied your manual, word for word, and distributed it to another city’s employees, without so much as asking or acknowledging the source? This same critic seems to think that if the manual was drawn up by one of your city employees at some point in time, then that employee was obviously paid with taxes from the citizens, and since we pay taxes in Lorain, too, that we, as taxpayers would be entitled to your handbook.

I’m sorry to waste your time with this, but I needed to ask someone in charge of another city their opinion. 

Reply? Zip. Thanks for nothing, Mr. Mayor.

So, I emailed Becky Ames, Mayor of Beaumont, Texas the very same letter. (Findlay and Beaumont were two cities that were in the first page of results when I Googled ‘city employee manual’.-hh)

Results? Same as Findlay. Thanks so much for your time, Madame Mayor.

So, still in search of some sort of closure, I Googled again and came up with the City of Clinton, Oklahoma. I wrote an abbreviated version of the above, and sent it off. I crossed my fingers this time.

Reply? YUP! Must’ve been the fingers crossed.

Very brief reply, and many thanks to Grayson Bottom, City Manager of Clinton, for taking the time to do so.

Our employee handbook is a public record under Oklahoma State Law. We even publish it on the internet. While I would appreciate a call, anyone can use it.

So, there ya go. Copy and Paste could be a solution. But according to a recent post by Loraine Ritchey, there are people? working on an employee manual for the City, as we speak. We could see this manual, in our lifetime!!

With that said, I extend an apology to my buddy Brian for doubting him on this. And I will continue to read his countdown on the forum with a small smile.

Copy and paste: Who’da thunk it?

Has anyone shown the Board of Education how to do this with their agendas?


18 thoughts on “Copy and Paste: Could It REALLY Be That Easy?

  1. Henrey,
    With your new found web of possible documentation and solutions that other cities have created, which are also PUBLIC RECORD, what else is available?

    Google the right words about how to fix our streets, legislation that has been created and already TESTED is at our computer screens.

    Housing? No Problem. COPY AND PASTE.

    Lorain is not the first to encounter the problems that our city is experiencing and realistically is years behind the times. Some other city out there has already BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, so why do we have to reinvent the solutions?

  2. I wish I had an answer, Brian.

    After the last conversation you and I had after the ODOT meeting, I’m baffled by why things that make so much sense to us ‘common folk’ seem to be so difficult for TPTB to wrap their heads around.

    Our housing situation could be remedied so easily, but TPTB are afraid to piss off landlords? ExCUSE ME? TPTB should be bent as &%$@ about the current condition of the rental housing in the City. What? Are they afraid the landlords will just sell all the properties and leave town? HA!! Yea, Right!!

    They’ve been getting away with murder for how long now, with properties that they’ve transformed ILLEGALLY into multi-unit apartments. The City needs someone who’s going to kick ass and take names.

  3. The city cannot say that they are “unaware” of some possible ideas. The dilemma I see is that it appears that more effort is made not to make something work than the other way around.

    Sorta brings new meaning to the joke about how many people it takes to screw in a light bulb…

  4. I was trying not to insert the ethnic pun that usually comes along with the joke. All I can say is that you beeter be careful critizising the political establishment. Us common citizens are held to a much higher standard than those that are employed by our tax dollars when there is something about you that they do not like.

    Even if you are fortunate enough to get invited to sit at the table to be part of the discussion, unless the powers that be can take credit for those ideas, more effort is put into trying to find ways not to make it work, instead of the other way around.

    I have said it before that while the mayor has a little over three years left, our council people are in an election cycle right now even if they haven’t announced their intentions. What can they claim they have done so far this year? The approved an unrealistic budget with the expectation of a revenue enhancement program that isn’t even on the table. We had a raod improvement program that was shot down by the voters with no back up plan.

    The first year is almost over and what can anyone claim that they have done this year? Doesn’t it become more difficult to impliment any new ideas next year when the basics that should have happened this year have gone nowhere?

    Where are the greatest concerns of our city officials right now? Is it about coming up with solutions to the problems that our city faces, or trying to shut up the public that tries to help?

  5. and the majority are oooooppppppppps MEN!!! sorry still trying to get my man to clean the basement! SIGH!!!!!!!

    I don’t mean to make light of your thoughts just in a weird mood today again…

    I agree if this city is to move at all in the right direction there has to be communication, sharing between all entities and “facing the truth of the situations” and putting Lorain first and foremost….. she ( the city ) should be the agenda but even those in the “public” have their own agendas!!! and whilst Lorain comes in 2nd on the agenda list she will end up last!

  6. Well, so much for being able to use that EXCUSE that is was wrong to copy and paste public records and use them, what is the next excuse why it isn’t done.

    Come on…
    What is it now…
    I’m at seventy some days and within a few days there should have been some sort of outline from some other cities manual being worked on.


  7. It’s Turkey Day. I hope that the manual that was promised by Thanksgiving will be coming out soon. If I don’t see one very soon, I cooked the wrong turkey today!!!!

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