Bob LaSala reportedly out as Pinellas County Administrator

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Bob LaSala is out as Pinellas County Administrator, two sources — including one County Commissioner — tell SaintPetersBlog. 

All that is left is the negotiation of an exit strategy for LaSala, but even that may be running into obstacles as a severance package for LaSala was determined to be “unacceptable” to the board. 

LaSala has come under intense scrutiny in the last week after he received critical evaluations from a majority of the County Commission. 

In response to these evaluations, LaSala met on Monday with several commissioners to discuss their evaluations, but said he had not had the chance to meet with Norm Roche or Seel, whose evaluations were the most critical of his performance, according to reporting from Chris O’Donnell of the Tampa Tribune. 

A Tampa Bay Times editorial appearing in Tuesday’s newspaper calls for a “swift exit” for LaSala.

“There is no reason to make this a messy fight that leaves scars,” the editorial board writes. “Like baseball managers, county administrators often have short expiration dates. LaSala has hit his, and he and the commission should arrange for a tidy exit.”

Unless LaSala is fired for cause, O’Donnell notes, his contract guarantees him six months of severance pay and benefits, which would add up to about $120,000 in salary and car allowance. He also has accrued roughly $40,250 in unused sick and vacation leave, according to the county’s human resources department.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.