Tony's Kansas City has been all over The Mayor's recent fiasco involving the suspension of City Manager Wayne Cauthen.
Today he is reporting that "Yesterday, before the Northland Council folk were able to get their ducks in a row. Mayor Funky made the dumb move of sending some of City Manager Cauthen's favorite City Hall employees home."
According to TKC's source, the employees were suspended by Mayor Mark Funkhouser, without consent of The City Manager, before Wayne Cauthen's suspension was even voted on.
This move will clearly open the door for appeals, reviews and hearings as no reason was given for their suspension or termination.
If City Manager Wayne Cauthen and/or fellow employees, who feel they have been wrongfully suspended or terminated, file a written complaint with The Human Resources Board within 10 business days of when the suspension or termination was handed out, a review must and will take place in timely fashion which could open the door for serious political problems not just on the part of the mayor but also for members of The HR Board.
Members of the Human Resources Board are: Alexandra Hutchings, Gilberto Acevedo and Joseph Moreland.
In such reviews, the Human Resources Board will need to request all documents pertaining to these employees' work. If there is nothing that can prove reasonable cause for suspension/termination a case could be made that they were fired for political reasons thus breaking Sec. 907 of the Charter and clearly opening another ethics investigation and/or lawsuit(s).
In the case of Suspended City Manager Wayne Cauthen, you can expect that he will invoke Sec. 218B- 3.B which states
The City Manager may, in writing filed with the City Clerk within ten days after receipt of the notification, demand a written statement of the reasons for such suspension or removal and a hearing before the Council. This statement shall be provided within ten days of the request. The Council shall hold a hearing no earlier than five and no later than fifteen days after the City Manager is provided a written statement of reasons for suspension or removal from office. The hearing before the Council shall be a public hearing unless otherwise ordered by a court
As most of this seems purely political, we recommend that the City Council use Sec. 212 and hold its own investigation into the suspension of City Manager Wayne Cauthen and the reported termination/suspension of other employees viewed as allies of Mr. Cauthen. Section 212 states:
The Council, or any committee of the Council so authorized by it shall have power to inquire into the conduct of any department or office of the City and to make investigation as to City affairs and matters of municipal interest, and for that purpose may subpoena witnesses, administer oaths, and compel by subpoenaduces tecum, the production of books, papers and other evidence. The Council shall provide by ordinance the penalty or penalties for contempt in refusing to obey any such subpoenas, or to produce such books, papers and other evidence and shall have the power to provide by ordinance for the punishment of any such contempt.
Stay tuned as this should get interesting...
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