Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Zahn Hires Another Unqualified, Non-Resident Politico

In my last post, I mentioned that the Kenner Clerk of Courts (and Mayor's Court) is the employment dumping ground for Kenner Mayors to stash political operatives.

Mary-Sharon Howland, currently Ben Zahn's Mayoral Assistant in charge of Party Planning, and Bob Ross, currently Zahn's Mayoral Assistant in charge of Press Releases and Ribbon-Cutting Photos, both were stashed in the Clerk of Courts office.

Former Code Enforcement Director and Ringleader of the Gang of 12 Malcontents suing the City to overturn a charter change approved by 70% of Kenner voters, Stephen Petit, was moved into a slot as Prosecutor in the Mayor's Court.

Under Ed Muniz and Mike Yenni, the Clerk of Courts was someone whose previous job was as Promotions Director at a Bowling Alley. Perhaps if she were still around she might have given Mary-Sharon a run for her money as Kenner's Chief Party Planner. At least, she was qualified for that job.

Now Ben Zahn has hired a new Assistant Clerk of Courts. What experience does this person have in court operations? None. Is this person a Kenner resident? Of course not.

Zahn's choice as the new Assistant Clerk of Courts is former Westwego Mayor Johnny Shaddinger.

Shaddinger, who lost his bid for reelection earlier this Spring, has been looking for his next place to land at the taxpayer trough and he found that spot in Kenner.

Of course, like another recent non-Kenner resident, John Tobler (hired as Mayoral Assistant in charge of Economic Development), there was no press release penned by Bob Ross to trumpet the hiring. Perhaps Ross is swamped with Zahn photo ops because I can't seem to find a press release for Mary-Sharon's gig as Party Planner either.

The cynic in me (yeah, I fight the urge to be cynical constantly when it comes to Ben Zahn) could claim that Zahn realizes he doesn't have anything to really tout in the hirings of Howland, Tobler, and Shaddinger. I mean Howland is a career political operative that Zahn tried to get to replace him on the City Council; Tobler has ZERO Economic Development experience and is, for all intents and purposes, a joke in his role someone who is just taking up space and getting a taxpayer=funded paycheck to help Zahn's reelection bid; and Shaaddinger is the failed Mayor of Westwego who, like Tobler, isn't even a Kenner resident.

If these folks, and other questionable Zahn hirings and promotions, are what he considers to be the "the best and brightest", we are in trouble folks.

Of course, seeing how Zahn has bloated the Kenner payroll with Mayoral Assistants and new Departments and Directors during his first 6 months, we will all be in real in trouble if Zahn is elected to a full 4-year term in Spring.


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