“The bureaucracy is expanding to meet the needs of the expanding bureaucracy.” ~ Oscar Wilde
Last week our County Commissioners hired a Financial Advisor. Generally, I am a proponent of “variable labor” (aka contractors) because you do not pay for benefits and if a full time employee is underutilized, they will grow their position to fit their time. I guess the County’s rational for this hire was that assistance was needed to accommodate the expected growth in government. For the county to hire someone on staff to do a limited function generally invites waste; but as a skeptic of the scope creep government has I am concerned that there are long term growth plans that as a taxpayer, I don’t want to pay for.
The Director of Finance, Vickie Neikirk, told the Times that she “foresees the firm helping in such matters as how to handle debt, capital projects, refinancing and cash-flow issues.” Now, paint me a skeptic, but doesn’t this sound like a growth issue?
As I look at the state of our economy, I have to wonder why the county would be looking at taking on debt or starting capital projects. Also, words like “cash-flow issues” sound like an invitation to increase taxes.
So while I would normally say contractor is better than a full time hire, in this case I say none of the above.