Some time in October two women from the Clerks office filed a complaint against the City Clerk. As Councilman Berry read from the opinion of corporation counsel it was for inappropriate offenses against two women in his office council censured the Clerk. The investigation was handled by the HR department, attorneys for the City, Union officials in the City, and the Mayor. Those are the only people I know of besides the women and the Clerk who were involved in this. I don’t know what the Clerk admitted to if anything and we shouldn’t have access to that either. I know the Council didn’t get a copy of the complaint, they didn’t question the Clerk, they didn’t get a written statement from the Clerk. The Mayor and the Attorney for the City reported their findings to the Council who then based on that information did what they did. These are sensitive issues for the women involved and for the Clerk as residents in my opinion we shouldn’t have the details of this kind of investigation.
Some are asking why didn’t the same thing happen to the Mayor when a claim was made against him? In short the council wasn’t aware of a claim. That claim according to his assistant was handled by herself, the HR director, and an attorney for the City. According to the Mayors assistant herself, the HR director, and attorney for the City never told the Mayor. Those three alone took care of the claim the person who made the claim was moved out of the Mayor’s office her salary raised in her new position to the same amount that she was making in the Mayors office. There was an 11,000.00 difference in salary the new job had a salary 11,000.00 less then what she was getting in the Mayors office. Problem solved all on the QT.
The council chair wasn’t called to City hall for a meeting to let him know a claim had been made. Council was never given a verbal report from anyone about what was discovered during the investigation into the claim made against the Mayor. There wasn’t an investigation it was three people according to depositions deciding how to take care of it. If you want to believe what’s been said during those depositions
A few years back the City Council of Dearborn Heights fought the Mayor until they got what they wanted. They as a body took away the cars being taken home by every department head in the City. The Mayor whined and yelled if he could have he would have thrown himself on the ground and kicked is legs and had a good old (baby fit). Ah the good old days. The days when the Council was doing something they fought for what was right. That was a breif moment in time about 2 years. Oh, but what two years they were. Anyone remembers Councilwoman Horvath going after the Mayor for the NSP program, the illegal woman hired by the Mayor. The Cars and so much more yes Councilwoman Horvath did that hard to believe right? Some of the fight has gone out of Councilwoman Horvath in the past few years.
Anyone remember this,
There is no cost to this the mayor just does not want to do it God forbid we would know who is spending what and when. Councilwoman Horvath said she wants to keep on this she does not want this to “wither and die on the vine”.. She has his number and so does councilman Tom Berry. Mystery companies all of a sudden there are other companies interested in this and at a better rate than FREE. The only thing better than FREE is if they PAY the CITY to use it. Like so many other things that the council want’s done and the Mayor does not, it just “withers and dies) never to be bought up again. IT is just one in recent history that I can think of. Read the full post
Remember this Councilman Berry.
The frustration builds with the $5.5 million Budget Deficit Reduction Proposal we submitted to the state. Yes, the state finally approved the fourth proposal, but they approved it because the numbers ‘appear’ to be logical. Press and Guide 2012
Our Parks and Recreation Director is considering a position with another city; that being said we should eliminate the position from the budget. This would save an additional $120,000 and place us in a position to join a regional recreation department/director. This regional approach will come sooner than later based on the legislature’s and Gov. Rick Synder’s intended actions.
Read all of Councilman Berry’s Opinion
Councilman Kosinski spent two (2) council meetings and one (1) study session to discuss how many invoices are coming in from the Fire Department. Worried was poor Councilman Kosinski that to many working hours spent dealing with those invoices.. Come on.. That’s the best this Council can do now? Councilman Kosinski you would spend all that time fretting over a bunch of invoices, but you’re not worried that all these years there hasn’t been a policy in place to monitor the usage of the City owned vehicles.
Does Council now want to turn a blind eye to what’s going on? What happened to that group of people who asked and fought for what they knew was right? I’ve said it many times and it’s been said to me many times that the Job of the Council is to monitor the money. The Administration Councilman Berry isn’t going to do it. It’s up to you as a body to put some rules, regulations something in place and to monitor what ever you put in place. Make sure that it’s being done. Get some GPS on those cars find out where those cars are going. Find out who is filling up on that fuel and when. Councilman Berry you brought it up before it was a good idea what happened?
Those of you who just ran for re-election had the option not to. You wanted your seats back the voters put you back there. So what are you going to do? Just sit on your hands and hope that everything will take care of its self. All that fire turned towards Councilwoman Badalow at the last meeting got any of that “fire” for the Mayor and his crap? Hasn’t it become obvious that the administration isn’t willing to put any policies in place. Non of you are new to this some of you have been dealing with the man for years. Oh I know it’s not your jobs to make policies and I know just what the Mayor will say “You’re micro managing.” So what? micro manage away and do the right thing. It’s apparent to all of us non of you are sitting there for the money (the salary of a council member is a joke.) I want to believe that you are at that table because you care about the City and it’s taxpayers.
You all played nice during and before the election, non of you “kicked up any dust.” Well it’s time to do some “kicking” as a body you have the opportunity to make some much-needed changes in our City. Are you willing to make those changes? Are you willing to bring the City into the 21st century or are we to sit back and look old and depleted. Are any of you willing to bring new and innovated ideas to the City? Who’s finding out what Dearborn is doing with our website? Who on the Council is going to make sure that the City (like every other City around us) has a Face Book page? Who on the Council wants to make sure that we have a twitter account. Who on the Council want’s to see to it that text messaging alerts to residents who sign up for it is available. Maybe someone on the Council can suggest a committee to handle the Website, and social media get some of the younger generation involved in some of this stuff. Members appointed by you the Council.
That opinion isn’t with the backups on the city website. If you want to look for yourself go to the city website city council- meetings and agenda-backups. Why isn’t it there? What was the opinion from corporation counsel?
The opinion was giving to the council members the day of the meeting while in closed session to discuss the opinion. Council didn’t have an advance copy nor did the public get the opportunity to voice any concerns they might have had. While the discussion about said opinion was in closed session the vote was not.
What was the about? The Censure of an elected officials in the City of Dearborn Heights for sexual harassment of two of his employees. The Council approved by vote to Censure this elected official. Now before everyone goes crazy as to why he wasn’t removed from office? Very simple the Council can’t. The City Charter does not give them the power to do so. They did the only thing that they could under the powers given to them by the charter. This action taken after an investigation into the claim made by two women in the office of the elected official. One woman moved out of City Hall to a different department in a different building. The other woman from what I understand is to report back to work on Monday in the same office. Everything that I’ve heard over the past month or so tells me that many on City Council would have liked to do more. Being elected does offer some protection the very fact that the opinion isn’t in the backups, and council getting it the day of the meeting say’s it all.
How protected is any employee in any municipality? City Hall as near as I can see after all these years is divided into several different ways. You have our elected officials ( Clerk, Treasurer, Council, and the Mayor.) All who take an oath to follow the law and the City Charter. The Mayor who appoints almost all the department heads who then become (officers of the City.) Then you have union employees, but even these employees are divided into the (get and the get not’s.) The DPW department are in the group of the (Get.) The rest in the AFSCME Union get little to no protection or representation. The other group of employees are non-union. Police and Fire each have their own union to represent and protect them.
I bring all of this up because over the years I find that when ever there might be a potential problem. City officials, and officers (Department Heads) go into protection mode. If an employee in the City has an issue with elected official of the City, or an (officer of the City) they can file a grievance/claim. That grievance is then investigated by the same people who have to protect the City.. The employee files the grievance lets say to the HR department. Who appointed that person to their job? The Mayor. Their job is to protect the City they aren’t on the side of the employee who filed the (grievance.) City council members are told from the beginning of any potential threat against the City not to talk.. While all the above are employees of the City they are not equal in their employment. You might be saying as I have over the years this is un-fair. It might be, but the one thing that must be kept in mind is taxpayer dollars. Any (grievance) that could end up costing the City money that money is taxpayer money.
I think this system is the problem (protect at all cost) the City. This is creating an environment ripe for any number of horrible things that could happen. Some have already those are still being played out (going through the (grievance) process. If history shows anything it won’t end well for the employees who filed the (grievance.) Some of you might point out that they have a Union true, but that union from what I’ve been told over the years does little to nothing. The (get nothing) half of the union have little to no help/protection from the union. With that being said what happened to doing the right thing. Let’s say God forbid someone was raped over at City hall by their department head. Does everyone over there just go into protection mode for the City? Is there no heart? Is there no compassion for the victim?
Any claim is more complicated when an elected official is involved. The Council doesn’t have the power under the charter to remove someone from office. That doesn’t stop them from voting on recommending someone resign from office.. As happened in San Diego that council voted that the Mayor should resign. When the council did that and it was all over the news nation wide. That sent a clear message to the employees. We as a City won’t tolerate sexual harassment by anyone. San Diego is a Charter City like Dearborn Heights,
The embattled mayor of San Diego has lost the support of many of his own allies. Arecall election is still possible, though such an effort would face high hurdles. But the city’s own regulations appear to protect Bob Filner from state laws that would otherwise provide several avenues for his enemies to push him out of office. Read full story
I’ve heard over the years by supporters of the Mayor what a “caring guy he is.” I hope you’re right. I hope the Mayor cares enough to protect his employees all of them.. We will see in the next coming weeks just how caring the Mayor and council members are..
Elected Officials Act Upon Employee Complaints of Sexual Harassment
July 9, 2009
What do you do when employees come to you as a member of the city council or village board and complain that their supervisor is sexually harassing them? Don’t just walk away from the employee and do nothing as the elected official did in Papay v. Town of New Canaan, Case No. 3:03-CV-2083 (D. Conn. 2006). Keely Papay sued her former employer, the Town of New Canaan, under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, alleging that a supervisor’s sexual harassment created a hostile environment, and that the municipality’s failure to fire the harasser forced her to resign. Papay was an administrative assistant in the Planning and Zoning Department. Papay claimed she was physically and verbally harassed regularly over a period of three years, including five to ten instances of conduct amounting to sexual assault. Papay complained to an elected member of the Town’s council, but he “walked away.” Papay’s attorney then sent a letter to the municipality detailing the verbal and physical harassment and asking that the municipality fire the harasser. The municipality investigated Papay’s claims and found they were inconclusive and decided not to fire the harasser. However, to “remedy the tension” between Papay and the harasser, the elected officials moved the harasser 60 to 100 feet down the hall from Papay’s office. Papay resigned after the municipality decided not to fire the harasser. The federal judge in rejecting the municipality’s request for summary judgment as a matter of law found that moving the harasser’s office was insufficient to shield the municipality from potential liability and offered Papay “no significant relief” as the harasser could still enter her office to retrieve files. Intentional sexual harassment by persons acting under color of state law violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and supports a Â§ 1983 action. In a Â§ 1983 action, a supervisor incurs liability for a violation of a federally protected right when the supervisor is personally involved in the violation or when the supervisor’s corrective inaction constitutes deliberate indifference toward the violation. “‘The supervisor must know about the conduct and facilitate it, approve it, condone it, or turn a blind eye for fear of what [he or she] might see.’” Ottman v. City of Independence, 341 F.3d 751, 761 (8th Cir. 2003) (emphasis added). A municipality is vicariously liable for hostile sexual harassment by its supervisors, unless it demonstrates entitlement to the Ellerth-Faragher affirmative defense. The Ellerth-Faragher defense consists of two necessary elements: (1) that the municipality exercise reasonable care to prevent and correct promptly any sexually harassing behavior and (2) that the plaintiff employee unreasonably failed to take advantage of any preventive or corrective opportunities provided by the municipality or to avoid harm otherwise. An elected official who “walks away” or turns a “blind eye” to an employee who is complaining of sexual harassment will likely jeopardize the municipality’s reliance on the Ellerth-Faragher defense to such claims. The elected official, who is notified of an employee being sexually harassed, must report that information to those in a position to take corrective action, if he or she is not in a position to correct the offending behavior. Editor’s Note: This article is not intended to provide legal advice to our readers. Rather, this article is intended to alert our readers to new and developing issues and to provide some common sense answers to complex legal questions. Readers are urged to consult their own legal counsel or the author of this article if the reader wishes to obtain a specific legal opinion regarding how these legal standards may apply to their particular circumstances. The author of this article, Jerry L. Pigsley, can be contacted at 402/434-3000, or at Harding & Shultz, P.C., L.L.O., P.O. Box 82028, Lincoln, NE 68501-2028, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Scott Held
Press & Guide Newspapers
DETROIT — A Dearborn Heights man who allegedly fatally shot 19-year-old Renisha McBride earlier this month will face charges.
Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy announced this morning that her office is charging Theodore Paul Wafer, 54, with second-degree murder, manslaughter and felony use of a firearm.
If convicted, he would be sentenced to up to life in prison on the murder charge, a maximum of 15 years on the manslaughter charge and a mandatory two years for felony use of a firearm.
Wafer was arraigned this afternoon before 20th District Judge Mark Plawecki, who set a bond of $250,000/10 percent. A preliminary examination of the evidence against Wafer was set for 9 a.m. Dec. 18. Read the rest
Full Reuters Story
This is in the hands of the prosecutors now the man will be judge according to the law. In this country he is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Please keep that in mind when making comments. Please refrain from Racial comments thank you for your understanding.