Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Such an Opportunity

The resignation of Trudy Beicht, director of the Hudson Youth Department, was made public last night at a special meeting of the Common Council Youth & Aging Committee. Tom Casey has the story in this morning's Register-Star: "Hudson Youth Dept. director resigns." 

Everyone, it would seem from Casey's article, had glowing things to say about the departing Beicht, who was hired during the two-year stretch (2006-2007) when Dick Tracy was in the mayor's office--even Alderman Wanda Pertilla (Second Ward), who, at the last regularly scheduled Youth & Aging Committee meeting on May 2, had voiced nothing but dissatisfaction with Beicht. She complained that Beicht was ignoring the seniors; Beicht countered that she had never been asked to direct the senior program. Pertilla demanded to know what Beicht was doing; Beicht, whose hours and salary had been cut in half in recent months, replied tersely, "Half of what I did when I worked full time." 

After an extended executive session, during which the committee discussed "personnel issues," the meeting was reopened to the public to discuss, in the words of Common Council president Don Moore, "the future of the department." No information about the future was forthcoming from the committee except that George Bednar, the program director, would be assuming the responsibilities of the director in the interim. From the audience, Supervisor Bill Hughes (Fourth Ward) shared this opinion: "We need to bring someone in who is used to dealing with at risk kids. Don't bring someone in who is afraid to the kids." Pertilla expressed her opinion that Beicht's resignation "gives us the opportunity to think about how we are going to cover both areas--at risk kids and seniors." Somehow, that doesn't seem to be a very natural combination.   

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