City of Bradenton, housing authority board accountable for misdeeds

December 24, 2013 

Clearly there is one key cause of the debacle that has crippled the credibility of all involved with the Bradenton Housing Authority -- lack of accountability.

Mayor Wayne Poston washes his hands of the whole sordid affair by saying, "The only responsibility I have is to name the board members and I am done." No, Mayor Poston, you are responsible for what your appointees do or don't do.

City Councilman Gene Brown is the Bradenton city council's liaison to the BHA, but had never attended even one meeting until after the fact. Yes, councilman Brown, you are accountable for not attending.

BHA board member Lois Gerber said is was HUD's responsibility for monitoring former executive director Weston DeSue and preventing him from turning the BHA's funds into his own personal piggy bank. She said HUD was supposed to tell her that DeSue's salary and bonuses far exceeded any reasonable compensation for administering such a relatively small HUD housing authority. No, Ms. Gerber, you are accountable for not having done that and other tasks. That is part of the fiduciary responsibility of being a board member.

Board member Napolean Mills is reported to have said that the "board would approve resolutions without seeing the language of the policies, including a 'performance-based bonus' system." Really! No, Mr. Mills, you have all the same fiduciary responsibilities as did Ms. Gerber and all the board members as well as former finance director and current interim executive director Darcy Branch, who wants to be the new executive director of the BHA. Really!

I believe it would only be prudent to replace every current BHA board member. I would also replace the city council member who is the city's liaison. I would require the new liaison to attend every BHA meeting and report back to the city council on a monthly basis.

Craig Trigueiro, MD

Lakewood Ranch

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