Register of Wills Schools Staff on 'Inappropriate Behavior'

With watchdog groups calling for his office to be eliminated, Register of Wills Ron Donatucci definitely feels like he's under the microscope. So he wants to make sure his staff doesn't give critics any ammunition.

Donatucci recently sent staffers a memo telling them not to eat at their desks, take personal phone calls or read newspapers and magazines. And he sure doesn't mince words. The memo:

As you are aware, City offices, especially ROW offices, have been under intense scrutiny for several months. We are facing tremendous budget cuts, while trying to save each employee's job. I am doing my part and now you all need to get serious about doing your part.

I have observed many employees eating at their desk, taking too many personal phone calls and reading newspapers and magazines.  This has never been acceptable behavior and it is especially unacceptable during this fiscal crisis.  It must end immediately.

If I see any employee disregarding this memorandum, that employee will be sent home immediately without pay and possibly suspended. From this point forward, If I see anyone reading a magazine or newspaper I will assume that they are dissatisfied with their current job and are actively searching the want ads for a new one. If this is the case, I will be happy to assist that employee by giving him or her all the free time they need to search for new employment.

Donatucci said he was exaggerating a bit for effect, but stressed that he doesn't want the public to come into his office and see employees reading or eating at their desks during their breaks and think they're slacking on city time. "Go to the lunch room in the back," he said.