Board Awards ITID’s Executive Director A 10 Percent Raise

The Indian Trail Improvement District Board of Supervisors: (L-R) Michael Johnson, Jennifer Hager, Betty Argue, Joni Martin and Keith Jordano.

Indian Trail Improvement District Executive Director Burgess Hanson received a glowing evaluation from the ITID Board of Supervisors on Wednesday, June 9, receiving a 10 percent pay increase to $185,000.

“Mr. Hanson, we know that you love this job. You are really passionate about it, and it really comes through with everything you do,” ITID President Betty Argue said. “I can’t thank you enough. We are very blessed as a district to have you with us.”

Human Resources Attorney Lara Donlon said evaluations of public managers are tricky because while Hanson is managed by the board, it must be done in public.

“Most employees get to do it in a private room with their supervisor and not in front of the world,” Donlon said.

She explained that the board had agreed to use the same evaluation forms used in the past, with a rating of one through five. Hanson received an overall rating of 4.85.

Supervisor Jennifer Hager, who has served on the board for 12 years, said Hanson is the best she has seen among the numerous administrators during that time.

“I haven’t had anyone sitting in your spot who has done such a great job, and that’s a fact,” Hager said. “I will agree to whatever we discuss to keep you sitting there.”

Supervisor Joni Martin agreed with Hager’s comments.

“I’ve been here two years, and there has been an enormous change and positive growth,” Martin said. “I absolutely think that in this time when you can’t find anyone who wants to do a job, we must do everything in our power to make certain that Mr. Hanson knows that he is appreciated.”

Martin made a motion to increase Hanson’s salary to $185,000 annually, which Donlon said is about 10 percent, pointing out that last year he received a 15 percent increase, and the 10 percent increase would put his salary within the range of comparable positions she has looked at. The motion carried unanimously.

Hanson said he appreciated the work of the board and his staff.

“They make it really easy for me and easy for all of you, hopefully,” he said. “We’re going to continue to exceed. I don’t like status quo, and I don’t like to rest on past achievements. I’m always looking to the future.”

Hanson said that The Acreage/Loxahatchee area is very unique and different than most anywhere else. “There is just mass development that wants to come in here,” he said. “It’s easy to develop and redevelop. It’s not easy to preserve and keep things the way they are.”

Argue asked Hanson to name a few of his accomplishments, and he listed having a strong work force and having his finance director, Jose Cabrera, at his right hand. “We’ve had two clean audits for two years in a row,” he noted.

He also noted the work of Assistant Executive Director Rob Robinson and Parks Director Elizabeth Ricci.

As for the future, he said that the district has started putting millings on dirt roads, which many people want. “Depending on what happens tonight, we can start putting in some traffic-calming measures through the district, as well as getting some of these other roadway projects completed,” he said.

He pointed that the road improvement plans had been underway when he arrived, and he was just following through. “That was a great move because it will protect the roads here,” Hanson said.

He also pointed to the culvert replacement project that now has three crews working. “We’re getting the culverts done,” Hanson said.

Next year will see a focus on canal work. “We’re going to start cleaning them out,” he said.

Argue said Hanson was being humble. “That doesn’t even scratch the surface of things that he has accomplished in the past year,” she said.

Former Supervisor Carol Jacobs said she had watched the recent progress at ITID.

“Management is the biggest thing to make you a success,” Jacobs said. “I think you have done an excellent job, and I think the rate was well deserved.”