Wanted: One drug program coordinator

At just about all of Mayor Bryan Baptiste’s public appearances since a Feb. 12 “Crisis on Drugs” meeting, he’s challenged the community to perform small miracles, and the community challenged him to hire a “drug program coordinator.”

Eight people had applied as of Friday but rsums are due at close of business March 13. Kaui Tanaka of the Mayor’s Office would not comment on who submitted rsums.

The selection committee will meet Monday to determine the guidelines and timelines, Tanaka said.

The pay range is $37,464-47,436. The position was not allocated in the County’s final budget plan for fiscal year 2002-03. The County’s personnel department could not say where the funds will come from.

Personnel staff acknowledged that there is a vacancy in the police department, but director Malcolm Fernandes was not available to verify whether the drug program coordinator will be paid with funds that would have gone to the police department vacancy.

The Mayor’s Office could not confirm whether the drug program coordinator would take over the youth services coordinator position left vacant by Sharon Agnew, also a county grant administrator.

The Mayor’s invitees in each facet of the anti-drug spectrum chose a selection committee to interview the job applicants in February:

* prevention, Jimmy Trujillo, Lihu’e Court Townhomes;

* enforcement/intervention, Robyn McCarthy, Hale Opio;

* treatment, Alton Amimoto, Hawai’i Judiciary drug court;

* aftercare, Annette Kramer, Alu Like, and Dely Sasaki, Department of Health family services.

The coordinator must have a degree in sociology, social work, psychology; three years experience and working knowledge of substance abuse treatment and prevention. Experience may be considered in lieu of a degree and knowledge of state and federal laws is preferred, as is statistical analysis and report writing.

Amimoto said he met with the mayor last week to discuss what he thinks the community expects from a drug coordinator.

From the treatment standpoint, an effective coordinator could make sure services aren’t being duplicated and maximize existing services to ensure the most efficient use of funding, Amimoto said.

Trujillo said he hopes that the meeting Monday will help to clear up confusion about the job description and the committee’s role in interviewing and selection.

Staff Writer Kendyce Manguchei can be reached at kmanguchei@pulitzer.net or 245-3681 (ext. 252).

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