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Accountabilityby Mark Reutter9:03 pmSep 6, 20220

Baltimore’s retired finance director is headed to a Florida conference on the city’s dime

Why are taxpayers footing the bill for a retiree to attend a private Workday conference? UPDATED: Scott withdraws the travel allowance.

Above: Henry Raymond attends a working meeting of a City Council committee in 2014. (Mark Reutter)

Mayor Brandon Scott today withdrew the travel allowance to be awarded to his retired finance director, Henry Raymond, by the Board of Estimates.

The mayor did not attend today’s BOE meeting, and his office has not yet responded to questions by The Brew about why the administration was willing to pay over $2,000 for a former official to attend a weeklong conference hosted by Workday, the software company modernizing the city’s payroll and financial management systems.

Below is last night’s story about Raymond’s scheduled trip: 

Henry J. Raymond retired as Baltimore’s finance director on August 31, but he’s going to a private conference in Orlando next week at the city’s expense.

Before the Board of Estimates tomorrow is a $2,224.74 travel request by Raymond to attend a Workday Rising conference sponsored by the cloud-based company that is modernizing the city’s payroll and financial systems that he formerly supervised.

Raymond, who made $233,466 last year and sat for eight years on the Board of Estimates, will give a keynote address on the city’s implementation of phases 1 and 2 of the Workday program.

Since the program’s rollout in early 2021, Raymond has defended the system before the City Council and in response to irate firefighters and other employees who say their hours and overtime rates were miscalculated and sometimes routed to the wrong bank.

More recently, city vendors have complained of delays and underpayments, which Raymond promised this summer would be cleared up.

Extras for Hotel, Meals

Raymond will fly this Sunday to Orlando – a day before the conference kicks off with a guest appearance by singer Jon Batiste – “to meet with organizers” and “complete a stage walk-through” prior to Monday’s opening, according to his travel request.

The government subsistence rate for Orlando is $198 a day. Henry is asking for $97 a day extra for his hotel and an additional $40 a day for meals and incidentals, totaling $712 with taxes during the gathering.

It is not clear why city taxpayers, rather than the the conference’s host, Workday Inc., is paying for his appearance.

Or why a retired employee is apparently representing the city.

Questions sent to Monica Lewis, Mayor Brandon Scott’s spokeswoman, to clarify his role and financial request have not been answered.

The mayor’s office was responsible for putting the item on the spending agenda.

According to a press release issued by Lewis last month, Raymond retired on August 31, a month ahead of the start date of his successor, Michael Moiseyev, a New York City deputy finance commissioner.

Yoanna Moisides, a deputy director, is now serving as the city’s acting finance chief, according to Scott’s office.

Alternating between state and city jobs, Raymond was hired by the finance department in 2008 and became finance director, replacing Harry Black, in 2014.

When he retired last month, Raymond was credited with 37 years of service, combining his time with both the state and city, which gave him an annual city pension of over $150,000 a year, according to Fox45 News.

Mayor Scott has praised Raymond for protecting the city’s bond rating, pension reform, balancing the budget and facilitating an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system for procurement services.

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