State workers union endorses DMV leader

The State of Nevada Employees Association last week endorsed the tenure of Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles director Edgar Roberts.

“Our union actually supports Edgar and his administration,” said SNEA director Dennis Mallory. “The majority of DMV employees also support Edgar.”

The statement came in response to an RN&R report on poor morale in state agencies, including the DMV, where field services administrator Thomas Fronapfel recently was fired with no reason given. Roberts did not respond to an interview request for the report.

In a subsequent message, Mallory added, “I think he [Roberts] has taken politics and favoritism out of the mix when dealing with his employees. … If all Department heads were willing to do this I believe we would have fewer grievances flying around. … Thus far, Edgar has showed a willingness to resolve issues. I’ve seen it as well as his employees.”

Mallory forwarded a letter from a state worker who said Roberts and his deputy Farrokh Hormazdi inherited a difficult situation when they took their posts.

“They have been trying to unravel the messes that were left to them,” the state worker wrote. “We don’t believe Mr. Fronapfel really informed them of the problems they were facing with management.”

The worker said Roberts and Hormazdi have “taken the time to come to the Reno office several times to talk to staff to find out how staff is feeling about matters that are affecting them in the workplace. … The staff and most of the supervisors are waiting for [Roberts and Hormazdi] to complete the house cleaning and get people in the positions that know what they are doing and work with the staff to make it a positive and very productive operation.”

Meanwhile, the San Francisco office of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission last week accepted the case of a Nevada DMV worker who charges workplace discrimination against the state. And Fronapfel’s lawsuit against the state was filed in U.S. District Court in Reno.

And a DMV worker informed us that all copies of the edition carrying our story were removed from the N&R newsstand at the Carson City office of DMV before the start of business on Oct. 2.