The Helena-West Helena City Council meets tonight in a regular session. The body meets on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month. The most recent meeting was held on March 29, 2011 to consider the termination status of several employees.
The council found that the mayor had failed to follow the city's handbook for terminating employees and therefore they were not terminated. The mayor then directed those employees to show up for work on the following morning at 8:00 a.m. in the city council chambers. When the employees arrived, the mayor had another bombshell waiting on them. The mayor had issued a veto of the city council's finding that the mayor had failed to follow the handbook. The legal eagles have said that the veto is of no consequence. We, at the Inside Scoop Online, will keep you updated as these matters develop.
The city council receives a packet of information prior to each meeting such that each member can read and be prepared to discuss the order of business for the day when arriving at the meeting. The current packet has in it a request from two (2) terminated employees to be heard before the city council.
Ms. Eara Mae Fuller, who served as a custodian during the Valley Administration and was terminated on her birthday, January 5, 2011; has requested a hearing. She was responsible for cleaning the 98 Plaza Street Building and the sanitation shop office building at 201 S. Sebastian. Fuller has remarked, this was the "worst birthday present ever." She continued, "I got fired for nothing." Ms. Fuller has been replaced, according to sources, by an outside contractor. Fuller's wages were minimum therefore it is difficult to replace her and save money.
Mrs. Chanta S. Mansfield Mitchell has worked for the city in a number of capacities. She holds a bachelor's degree from Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. She is a certified Law Enforcement Officer and she has experience in the Parks & Recreation area. Mrs. Mitchell is an avid "hooper" known for taking it to the basketball court and challenging whomever is on the court. Mrs. Mitchell was the domestic violence advocate for the Helena West Helena Police Department and her position received part of its funding from a grant secured last year in order to assist local victims of domestic violence.
The appeal letters are included in the city council packet and can be viewed below: