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Issues and Voices that Matter December 31, 2009

Dallari: One-on-One (part 2)


Part-2 from a 60-mimnute interview with Bob Dallari, chairman of the Seminole County, Fl., Board of County Commissioners, at the start of the second term as chairman. Length — 15:56

Produced, reported and edited by Stephen McKenney Steck

Bob Dallari, Chairman of the Seminole County, Florida, Board of County Commissioners – sat for a one on one 60-minute interview with Stephen McKenney Steck on Thursday, December 3, 2009, a bit less than 30-days into the start of his second term as chairman.

(You may hear part-1 of this interview filed in the program archive section. Click on the category labeled “government.” Part-1 includes Dallari’s remarks about 7 key subjects – groundwater withdrawal, budget cuts, staff reductions, level of service to residents, the School Board’s one cent sales tax extension, commuter rail and consideration of a strong mayor form of county government.)

In Part -2 of “Dallari: One on One,” you’ll hear the chairman address issues the commission confronted last year or will confront in 2010. Dallari will talk abut the relationship status between the other 4 commissioners and himself as well as with Orange County, and his relationship with the 7 cities in Seminole County, the state legislative delegation and the school board. He’ll also respond to questions about why he and the commission are opposed to Amendment 4 to the State Constitution – known as “Home Town Democracy.” And he’ll talk a bit about what he has done for his own district.

Part 2 of this interview starts by asking Dallari about the firing of County Manger Cynthia Coto and the qualities of experience the commission is hoping to find in the candidates for that position.

(See additional information below about Seminole County Government)

Extended Interviews & Pictures

Click on the picture(s) to enlarge.
Bob Dallari, Chairman, Seminole County Board of County Commissioners
Bob Dallari and Stephen McKenney Steck
Extended interview part 2 (20:10)

Chairman Dallari in his office
Bob Dallari and Stephen McKenney Steck
Extended interview full (50:22)


Context: Seminole County Board of County Commissioners

The government of Seminole County, Florida is led by a 5-person elected board of commissioners. Each commissioner is elected county-wide but must reside in and serve a particular district of the county.

Each commissioner serves a 4 year term in office and may be reelected as often as they continue to qualify for office and the electors vote them into office.

In 2010, each commissioner is paid an annual salary of 80,358. This salary has essentially remained at that level for the previous two years. The county considers the position of commissioner a full time job. Each commissioner has one full time executive assistant.

The board sets and controls an annual budget for the expenses necessary to run county government. For 2010 – the current budget year, they approved expenses totaling $466.2 million dollars. In the previous year, that budget was $490.4 million dollars, and in the year prior to that, it was $485.1 million dollars.

The county currently employs1,354 staff members. Last year that total was 1,459, and the year prior they employed 1,515

Each November – from among the 5 commissioners – they select a chair to serve a 1 year term. The chair — other than facilitating the commission meetings, signing official documents and externally representing county government to its residents — has no greater authority than any of the other 4 commissioners.

This is known as a “commission-manager” form of government in that the commission hires a county manager to administer the activities of the county as established by the resident-elected commission. The board also hires the county attorney. Both the manager and the attorney report to the commission. All other staff report to the county manager.

Additional Feature Information

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