Name: Barry Barnard
Party: Republican – running in this contest as a NPA (non party affiliated)
Contact Info: firstname.lastname@example.org; (772) 778-0165
How long living in Indian River County: 24 years
Place of Birth: Des Moines, Iowa
Family: Fran, wife of 47 years in Aug.; daughters, Michelle (45) and Lisa (43), and pending adoptee, Miloura, 6 ½, currently a resident of Haiti; three grandchildren ages 9, 11 & 14.
Please list Civic and Volunteer Leadership Experience including title & position and organization including dates and locations.
Prior to moving to Vero Beach, I served for 2 years as President of the Spring Branch (Houston, TX) Dad’s Club YMCA Swim Team, a top 10 nationally ranked AAU swim program. Coincident with this tenure, I was a Board Member of the Dad’s Club YMCA.
Subsequent to moving to Vero Beach in 1988, I have been involved in the following civic activities:
- Habitat For Humanity – served as Treasurer, member of the Board, and family mentor partner (approx years of service: 1999 – 2001).
- Mentored at Gifford Middle School and Vero High School (named Mentor of the Year on one occasion); probably in the 2003 – 2005 time frame.
- Member of the Vero Beach Volunteer Fire and Rescue Squad. This arose from my participation as 1st Responder and volunteer ambulance driver during the summers of 2009 & 2010 at our former summer home in Wintergreen, VA. I was a member of the volunteer Vero unit during that same time frame; later it was suggested that I was too old, and I was told to resign.
- Guardian Ad Litem….became active volunteer in 2012.
- Haiti…..have been engaged in assisting in Haiti post earthquake relief activities, primarily in a quasi-managerial affiliation with New Life Children’s Home in Port -au- Prince. I am writing this from Haiti, my 13th trip amounting to over 300 days cumulatively.
What issues motivated you to run for this office and what do you hope to accomplish during your term?
I was motivated to run for office by disgust over the current state of politics and the politicians who fail to get it. It’s all about money….and power….and entitlement …….for them. The concepts of service and sacrifice envisioned and practiced by our Founding Fathers has been corrupted by most of those currently in the political arena at the Federal, State and Local levels, regardless of party affiliation. More disturbing is the subtle escalation and acceptance of this behavior.
I hope to introduce a novel approach that encourages new leaders willing to acknowledge the difficulties being encountered by the majority of our society, yet willing to take less to serve while we jointly strive to solve our common problems. It’s time to rescind special interests for lobbyists and politicians. End special perks and self-imposed benefit programs. Cut back when the rest of us cut back. And if the particular position would be best served by someone with experience compatible with the job description, encourage office holders with that experience to step forward.
I am willing to return $40,000 of the mandated salary and benefits in this job for the privilege to serve. I’m not wealthy, and this might be a bit of a stretch, but I feel it is the right thing to do and I’ll continue to challenge others in local and state government to do the same. I’m sick of mindless platitudes about customer service and adherence to fiscal conservatism while embracing a salary rationalization that’s premised upon some other group of self serving politicians trying to justify the continuation of “more money for us”. If they can index salaries and benefits up in good times, where’s the decency to index them down when they call for the rest of us to cut back? Even the oil companies throw us a bone every once in awhile.
I also hope to use my term to advocate for several important issues I’m particularly drawn to including the plight of abused, abandoned and neglected children, and the homeless in Indian River County . I am also still very committed to the relief efforts in Haiti and would like to share that concern with others of like mind. Please visit www.BarryBarnard.com for a more complete rant of my view of current politics and why I chose to run.
Why do you feel qualified to run for this position?
I am a retired CPA with 3 years of experience with the 2nd largest CPA firm in the nation at the time I was with them, specializing in audits of financial institutions. Subsequent career moves included 3 years as Director of Research for two major Southern brokerage firms; a stint as Chief Financial Officer of a major regional homebuilder/manufacturer of pre-manufactured housing units; Regional Controller for a wholesale and retail Building Material subsidiary of NYSE listed Company; VP of Finance for Houston, TX based interior drywall contractor with revenues in excess of $100 million. Was CEO of their FL operations during my last several years of employment. I retired in 1988.
In addition to my comprehensive financial management background and CPA certification, I also earned/obtained the following licenses during my career: Florida General Contractor; real estate sales; life and health insurance sales; stocks, bonds and mutual funds sales. A complete listing of my former employers, positions held and responsibilities can be viewed at: www.BarryBarnard.com/tax-collector/biography.
What, if any, changes would you make to how the Tax Collector’s Office is run and operated?
If one were to attempt to put the operations of the Tax Collector’s office in more of a “private sector” context, mission #1 would be a critical analysis of the operations. This includes systems, personnel, information technology, etc. The concept of zero based budgeting is that mentally you take everything apart and then see if you can rebuild it so that it is more efficient. This should be done with the assistance of key staff (but with input from all), keeping in mind that while we want to focus on improving the customer experience, we need to continue to look for ways to streamline operations.
Figuring out how to drive more transactions through the internet, I think, is an imperative. Another is to study workloads by month and office, to detect if there are any obvious trends that could be improved upon by flexible staffing, ala McDonald’s, which periodically time studies its’ inside and drive thru operations to see how they can be improved. Implementing scheduled appointments via the internet might also prove to be a more efficient way of expediting the handling of customers, especially those elderly or with special medical or handicap needs, or more difficult technical issues that require special expertise or extended time to resolve.