City approves closed meetings despite CPOA's dissaproval

2 years 8 months 4 weeks ago Tuesday, September 22 2015 Sep 22, 2015 Tuesday, September 22, 2015 2:14:00 PM CDT September 22, 2015 in News
By: Tyler Murry, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - The city plans to go through with a plan to close all city employee grievance meetings after approving a change to a city ordinance Monday night.

The executive director of the Columbia Police Officers' Association raised concerns in a press conference on Sep. 15 about the proposed change to a city ordinance that would mean hearings on the grievances of city employees would no longer be open to the public.

CPOA Executive Director Dale Roberts said, "That's all going be done behind closed doors now, and the perception of closed police hearings is not one that gives the public a lot of faith in what's going on. In the current environment, that's just not the way to operate."

Previously, the ordinance stated city employees had the privilege of openly appealing grievances involving dismissals, suspensions without pay or disciplinary demotions against them. 

City Manager Mike Matthes said the proposal is designed to protect the city employees and modernize the way Columbia performs these hearings.

"There's not a very high number of people who believe an open hearing would help them," Matthes said

Roberts said the officers still want the option and do not want to lose the right.

Roberts said, "The public wants to know what is going on, it's their police force. There are some scenarios where the employee wants to allow that kind of access."

Matthes said, "The fundamental truth is other employees are involved, and you don't want to drag them through a public, embarrassing, sometimes humiliating hearing, if they don't want to."

Roberts also said he was disappointed with how quickly the decision was made.

"We got blindsided. They do the public comment period, then that closes so we can't say anything. For the first time ever, Matthes, the city attorney and the city HR director start bringing up scenarios," Roberts said. "We could have responded, but they didn't raise those when it was our time to talk."

Roberts said in his press conference on Sep. 15 he can only speculate as to why the city is doing this. He said it could have something to do with the Rob Sanders case. Sanders was found not guilty of third-degree assault in October 2013 involving pushing inmate Kenneth Baker into a holding cell. Roberts said he believes the public nature of the case could have impacted the proposed change.

Roberts also said it is not related to his Facebook post this summer marking the one-year anniversary of the death of Michael Brown as "Darren Wilson Day."

Matthes confirmed on Sep. 15 the Facebook post had nothing to do with this change to opened and closed hearings.

"It seemed like the right thing to do to modernize our system. We are growing up as a city. We want to become a more professional organization," Matthes said. "There are things we are supposed to keep private, and I believe personnel records is one of those things."

Officers or city employees filing grievances will still have the right to a personnel advisory board hearing, but would no longer have the right to a public hearing under the new change.

More News

Grid
List
PINEVILLE (AP) — A husband and wife from southwestern Missouri have been ordered to pay $5,000 in restitution for cashing... More >>
1 hour ago Thursday, June 21 2018 Jun 21, 2018 Thursday, June 21, 2018 10:22:42 AM CDT June 21, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Fashion designer Kate Spade will be buried Thursday in Kansas City, where she was born.... More >>
3 hours ago Thursday, June 21 2018 Jun 21, 2018 Thursday, June 21, 2018 7:36:00 AM CDT June 21, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – The black bear population in Missouri is growing, and with the growth comes an increased chance for a... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, June 21 2018 Jun 21, 2018 Thursday, June 21, 2018 7:19:00 AM CDT June 21, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - MU received a one million dollar grant as part of an inclusive initiative from the Howard Hughes Medical... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, June 21 2018 Jun 21, 2018 Thursday, June 21, 2018 7:18:00 AM CDT June 21, 2018 in News
NEW YORK - All Mizzou fan's eyes are on the NBA draft, which begins Thursday night, and who will pick... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, June 21 2018 Jun 21, 2018 Thursday, June 21, 2018 7:09:00 AM CDT June 21, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- Last week, a giant dust storm on Mars took up about a quarter of the Red Planet. Now,... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, June 21 2018 Jun 21, 2018 Thursday, June 21, 2018 4:26:00 AM CDT June 21, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Amid overall lower enrollment numbers, the UM Board of Curators will vote on the FY 2019 budget at... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, June 21 2018 Jun 21, 2018 Thursday, June 21, 2018 1:28:00 AM CDT June 21, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - After an armed robbery at Deco to Retro and Vintage Clothing on the Business Loop June 15,... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 8:52:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLE COUNTY - The Cole County Sheriff's Department and the MUSTANG Drug Task Force seized 14 pounds of marijuana, four... More >>
15 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 7:40:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City Parks and Recreation Department could see some major changes in authority if a recommendation... More >>
16 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 7:16:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — An attorney suing former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens and his staffers says recently uncovered texts show... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 5:34:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- A study conducted by an MU professor shows sensitive medical information could be put in the wrong hands without... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 4:18:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - MU hosted a summit on Wednesday to discuss ideas about a new research building with the other UM... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 4:17:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
ELDON - Police in Eldon arrested a suspect Wednesday for an assault at a barber shop. Officers responded to... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 3:46:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Authorities said they were looking for a man near Vandiver Drive who was considered armed and dangerous. ... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 3:01:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - Callaway County emergency officials are getting some new digs. Crews will soon move into a new... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 2:55:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - People in mid-Missouri are doing whatever it takes to stay cool during the summer. That includes trash... More >>
21 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 2:04:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) - Four years after Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill co-sponsored legislation targeting tax havens such as the Cayman... More >>
21 hours ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 1:49:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 74°
12pm 77°
1pm 77°
2pm 78°
3pm 78°