Utility director's performance raises red flag in Bertram
February 06, 2013, 9:00 am by Brenda Young
City of Bertram officials made it very clear last night they have several concerns regarding the performance of the city’s utility supervisor Chris Walker. During a special council meeting called Tuesday night, the group discussed specific issues and even discussed the possibility of issuing a formal reprimand.
Mayor Dickie Allen introduced the subject by saying he began to question certain expenses while in the process of paying the city’s bills.
"As the mayor, I look over all the bills. I had a gas bill that came in Jan. 5, on a Saturday, where Chris bought a tank of gas. On the 6th, on Sunday, he bought another tank of gas, so I’m looking at that and deciding if that’s a lot of gas to use in one day,” Allen said. "That kind of money raises a red flag since I’m the one signing the checks.”
Some of the council members then began to calculate the actual mileage for the 216 miles Walker says he drove over the course of that weekend and questioned how the city-owned truck issued to Walker was only averaging between three and six miles to the gallon.
"I burned a tank of gas. I’m making my trips back and forth to Burnet to check the wells for leaks, and I burned a tank of gas,” Walker said.
At one point, Walker said the best gas mileage he receives in the truck never averages more than 13 mpg, and he did let the truck remain idle for a number of sites he visited that weekend.
"It just seemed like an awful lot of miles in one day,” Allen said.
For more on this story, see next Wednesday’s Burnet Bulletin.
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