Case spotlights worker complaints vs. state agency

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Posted: Wednesday, July 10, 2013 11:00 pm | Updated: 12:08 am, Thu Jul 11, 2013.

A former investigator with the New Mexico Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management is seeking a restraining order against the department’s chief counsel for alleged slander and a pattern of harassment.

The case, heard in First District Court on Wednesday, is the latest of several complaints filed by employees in the last year against top administrators at the department.

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  • Jennifer Bizzarro posted at 9:08 am on Thu, Jul 11, 2013.

    Jennifer_Bizzarro Posts: 569

    This behavior is pervasive throughout the Cabinet and its appointees. For example, Why is the State Library only open 4-1/2 hours a day? Ask the State Librarian (better not; ask someone who works for her instead). Or check into the letter to the Editor one person wrote regarding PED's purchase of school books from out of state: a definite no-no, but done by the governor's darling Secretary DESIGNATE, Hanna Skandera. What galls me is the overall lack of transparency (Chuck's trip, Hanna's purchase, the governor's spending priorities--tourism v. education,etc.).

    There is no mention in this paper today of how Albuquerque ranks in the latest employment poll taken by the Brookings Institute poll, but KOB-TV covered it last night and again this morning: our largest city is #97 out of 100 comparably-sized cities (http://www.kob.com/article/stories/S3094195.shtml?cat=516).

    State workers would be happy to go somewhere else, but there's nowhere else to go. And the governor refuses to release the thousands of jobs that are open in state government and would boost our economy.

    She must thrive on bad press.

  • andrew perkins posted at 9:06 am on Thu, Jul 11, 2013.

    ajperkins Posts: 4

    I also left the Agency in 2008, as an appointed ASD vis a vis Governor Richardson. Ms. Ortiz was always plotting as she did previously at the GSD, where I was Bureau Chief and CFO. The office of Emergency Management is and was very political. I would love to be deposed in this matter. George Heidke was the attorney during my tenure and was not independent in his position and was very concerned to be in a classified job, though virtually all attorney's in NM are exempt. ajperkinscpa@yahoo.com

  • Tracy Lopez posted at 7:45 am on Thu, Jul 11, 2013.

    TDL Posts: 5

    I left that place for EXACTLY the same reasons. Maria Ortiz abuses her power and the administrators turn the other cheek. It is COMPLETELY a HOSITLE WORK ENVIRONMENT. It's run with a complete disregard for any employment law. They have lost some very valuable employees because of the mismanagement.

    I can't attest for Mr. Heidke's behavior but I would CERTAINLY attest for the unethical behavior of Maria Oritz. The woman needs to retire or find a job she enjoys, and one with not so much power, she abuses it.

    Maybe rocking the boat will cause the change thats needed.

  • Alfred Padilla posted at 6:23 am on Thu, Jul 11, 2013.

    Xenoace32 Posts: 465

    Thats what happens when thugs and dictators are elected into office. I have no respect for these so called leaders how pathetic these people have become!


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