TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Workers at HART, the Hillsborough Regional Transit Authority, want their CEO to step down immediately. They claim she’s creating a hostile work environment. However, Adelee Le Grand said she was brought in to turn the ship around, after a troubled past.
Hart’s board launched an investigation on Tuesday. At next week’s meeting on Dec. 5, it’ll be determined whether to keep, suspend or terminate Le Grand.
“Lack of communicating with the union, a lot of hostility in the workplace, no direction, no leadership,” said Ismael Rivera, ATU trustee representing Local 1593.
Riveria said the union representing nearly 400 HART employees is calling for Le Grand’s resignation. The union said 57 employees have either quit or been fired under her leadership.
“Get somebody in here that can lead this organization,” said Rivera. “It’s not about the union, it’s about the workers who are willing to come to work and do their job, but it’s just very hostile for them to come and even perform their duties.”
Le Grand was chosen to lead Hillsborough County’s Transportation Agency in January 2021. She says between 2018 and when she stepped in, HART had six CEOs.
“It is difficult to have an organization with 800 employees, who very frequently are changing direction, have no understanding what the vision is, don’t really understand their role in the vision, to then get someone who’s here who’s focus on driving change,” said Le Grand.
Part of that change Le Grand said is doing more with less as voters recently rejected a 1% sales tax addressing transit and road improvements in Hillsborough County.
“This is a part of restructuring and re-organizing and moving forward we have to be lean and mean as they say, and we’re working towards doing that,” said Le Grand.
When asked about employees calling for Le Grand to resign, she said she serves at the pleasure of the board. Commissioner Gwen Myers, who serves on HART’s board, said this all stems from employees sending the board emails and concerns about the work environment.
“We want to make sure that the employees of HART are being able to provide the services to individuals who ride the bus and not worried about coming into a hostile work environment,” said Myers
Myers also said the investigation will also reveal if former top HART employee, Terri Wright, will have to pay some of her salary back. It comes after it was recently discovered she was employed and paid by both hart and New Orleans Regional Transit Authority at the same time.
“Let’s investigate all the CEO, former employees and current employees and get to the bottom of what is this so-called toxic work environment that is not good for Hillsborough County,” said Myers.