What were the Cleveland County Commissioners thinking to appoint Jane Shooter as the interim Director of the Cleveland County Department of Social Services? Or to allow her to be appointed by the now demoted DSS Board?
Besides the fact that Jane Shooter has been shacked-up with her DSS co-worker gal-pal of many years and such a relationship would be considered nepotism by every standard. Besides the fact that Jane Shooter has surrounded herself over the years with others in the LGBTQ community. Besides the fact that Cleveland County voters rejected same-sex marriage by very large margins several years ago and the fact that the NC Constitution was amended to outlaw same sex marriage; only to be over-ruled by a single US Judge. Besides the fact that the Commissioners were requested to investigate the DSS for wrongdoing, which they did not, resulting in a Federal Lawsuit that the CCDSS lost (settled) and paid out $55,000. Besides the fact that Jane Shooter now has the hire-fire capability at DSS that allows her to continue stuffing the DSS with LGBTQ persons as usual. Besides all of that, CCDSS has a string of dead babies that they couldn’t or wouldn’t protect. They file phony “Competency” complaints on people to get control of their money. They totally allow Food Stamps to be used to purchase drugs with no criminal punishment ever for the offenders. They have no real success or plans for success with finding jobs for their food-stamp customers although they call themselves a “Work First Agency.” And last but not least, how many illegal immigrants and victims of national disasters over time have been sent to Cleveland County. And are still here. For instance, how many Katrina Victims are still here in Cleveland County.
So, what does Jane Shooter have on the Commissioners to get herself promoted to the top job at DSS???
It beats me. But I have submitted a Freedom of Information Act and NC Public Records Law Requests to the Commissioners for some answers. I will pass along their answers if and when I receive them.
The Information request is provided at the end of this article.
But folks, we are at a crossroads in Cleveland County, North Carolina and the USA. Us citizens have stood by and let agencies such as the Cleveland County Department of Social Services do what they damn well please, with no oversight and ever-increasing demands for bigger and bigger budgets. I suspect if the budgets of the DSS country-wide are added up, they would exceed the National Debt of $22 TRILLION. That is $44,000 plus interest per every man, women and child in Cleveland County today, tomorrow and likely forever. Plus, the day by day expenses of running such an inefficient and unaccountable operation.
Note that I tried to develop a figure for the budgeted cost for running the DSS for the present 2018-2019 fiscal year, which, up to just a few days ago was on the Cleveland County website, But, when I googled “Cleveland County NC Budget,” found the link for 2018-2019 and clicked on it, I received the following message:
Sorry, this page doesn’t exist.
Please check the URL or go back a page.
404 Error. Page Not Found.
The Commissioners have modified the Cleveland County Website to be more of a TV commercial than anything of value to citizens. At Great cost I would imagine.
But why would the Commissioners do this? Completely re-doing the county website from something helpful to basically a nothing. A JOKE of no value to anybody. (Look it up for yourself!!) Except to hide the fact that something is amiss in Cleveland County. More than just going backwards in our state rankings for economic development. A fact that Kristin Reese of the Economic Development Partnership just ran a recent and totally phony Press Release in the Shelby Daily Liar saying that this “going backwards” was really a good thing. How stupid do these Commissioners and the EDP think we are? Plenty, I reckon. But that is a story for another day.
Also, to address a bit more the fact that the Commissioners just demoted the DSS Board’s five members, including Commissioner Chairman Susan Allen, to an advisory status, for a good and just cause; why did they just remove all the do-nothing, know-nothing, old DSS Board Members and start all over again. Instead, they kept all the five ole members. And just added two more. Danny Blanton being the main one as he will certainly bring anything wasteful and wrong at the DSS to the Commissioner’s attention.
And then appointed Jane Shooter as Interim Director. They know or should know that Jane Shooter is a complete disaster with direct links to very many of the problems at DSS. There is access to sworn depositions in a Federal Lawsuit where DSS workers, when the finally understood that lying on sworn depositions would result in jail time, spilled their guts on the record and under oath that Jane Shooter and others has ordered them to do illegal acts. Testimonials that resulted in DSS having to pay $55,000. Yet DSS never so much as reprimanded anybody. Especially Jane Shooter or Karen Ellis Prichard, the former DSS Director. Now, again, why would the Commissioners want anything to do with this situation??? Something only useful for forming the basis of a brand-new Federal Lawsuit.
Also, the Commissioners do NOT have to do this. Another qualified candidate has applied. The Rev. Dante A. Murphy has applied and is fully qualified for the position. Rev. Murphy is also well known for insisting that rules, regulations, policies and especially the law is fully applied in everything that the DSS does. Isn’t that exactly what the Commissioners want? Or should want?
Commissioners, appoint Rev. Dante A. Murphy to the position of Director of the Cleveland County Department of Social Services. And, once and for all put some oversight over that secret bunch at CCDSS. It is time to make some changes and turn loose of the illegal DSS acts of the past!!!
The following is the text of my Freedom Of Information Act Request to the Commissioners. If the Commissioners actually look at the contents of the documents noted, I suspect they will give plenty of attention to what I have recommended. If not, Cleveland County will continue to have a hard row to hoe.
To Commissioners and County Manager:
It has come to my attention that Jane Shooter has been appointed Director of the Cleveland County Department of Social Services.
As this appointment comes at a time of transition of authority from the DSS Board to the County Commissioners, through the County Manager, I have some questions regarding the manner, by whom and when this appointment was made.
Therefore, under the Freedom of Information Act as well as North Carolina Public Records Laws I am requesting the following information/records.
1. Minutes of any and all DSS Board or Board of Commissioner meetings where this appointment of Jane Shooter as interim DSS Director was discussed and decisions made.
2. Records of discussions of any kind that indicate the DSS Board or Board of Commissioners investigated and discussed Jane Shooter’s role in any way in the foundational matter of the Dante Murphy v. The Cleveland County DSS Board lawsuit. Beginning from the Commissioner’s meeting where Rev. Murphy announced his resignation from DSS, requested the Commissioners investigate DSS in regard to his statements, through the lawsuit and the approval of the settlement where Rev. Murphy was paid $55,000 to settle said lawsuit.
3. Records of discussions and actions of any kind in regard to sworn admissions of guilt by DSS employees in regard to said lawsuit.
4. Records of discussions and resulting disciplinary actions of any kind in regard to sworn admissions of guilt by DSS employees in regard to said lawsuit.
5. Records of any attempt by the DSS Board or the Board of Commissioners to recover or learn of any information or sworn court records regarding sworn admissions of guilt by DSS Employees in regard to said lawsuit.
6. Whether or not Jane Shooter is under active consideration for the official position as DSS Director.
7. Any and all documents and records that justify a decision to appoint Jane Shooter or anybody else as the official DSS Director.
8. If any of the previous requests are deemed confidential by the DSS Board or Board of Commissioners for any reason, a statement of receipt of information regarding the previous requested records and documents by the DSS Board or Board of Commissioners is requested.
Robert A. Williams