The City Council also approved an ordinance preventing contractors and subcontractors with any city department to confirm that they are not on the Excluded Parties List System.
The resolution also creates the position of Water and Sewer Ethics Compliance Officer and names to that position the director of water and sewer operations (James Brasher) retroactive to Sept. 25, 2007.
Under the ethics code, employees and contractors are required to “at all times, recognize his or her primary obligation is to protect the safety, health and welfare of the public in the performance of his or her duties” as well as to “accept and perform operations assignments only when qualified by education or experience in the specific technical area and levels of operation involved.” He or she is also required to be “completely objective and truthful in all professional reports, statements and testimony. At no time shall he or she ever conceal, destroy or alter documents; lie or make misleading statements to anyone investigating any alleged incident or attempt to cause another person to fail to provide accurate information.”
The code also requires avoidance of conflicts of interest and “shall not review or influence the decision of his or her employee’s work for any public body on which he or she may serve.”
Employees are not allowed to accept gratuities, and are forbidden to falsify or exaggerate academic or professional accomplishments, and shall not associate with any “business venture by any person or company which he or she knows or has reason to believe is engaging in business or professional practices of a fraudulent or dishonest nature.”
Employees are also required to report any violations to the proper authorities. Violation of any of these terms is subject to discipline as outlined in the city’s personnel handbook.
The council, mayor, city manager and assistant city manager met with Mike O’Brien, the city attorney, during the executive session. O’Brien also gave a brief statement of appropriateness before the council adjourned.
Council President Horace Patterson said the two votes after the executive session were necessary to “make certain we are in compliance with the (Environmental Protection Agency) agreement.”
Although no specifics were discussed during the open portion of the council meeting, the compliance issues involved seem to stem from an agreement from 2007 over the illegal use of the Amanda Bingham (formerly Grant Street) well earlier in this decade.
Further coverage of Monday’s meeting will appear in Wednesday’s Daily Home.