Nepotism policy change tabled
West Memphis council passes on measure to curb favoritism in hiring
By JOHN RECH
A proposed amendment to the city of West Memphis’s policy on nepotism failed last week in coucil chambers. Mayor Marco McClendon said it was part of a personal attack by Councilman Wayne Croom.
Croom wanted to prevent future favoritism toward siblings under the city work culture, thus the proposed nepotism policy.
“Everywhere I’ve worked, every place I know includes siblings in its nepotism policy “ said Croom. “We’ve got every relative in there except siblings. No one should be in a position that directly manages a sibling. It would alleviate some issues down the road and some of the past issues we’ve had.”
Mayor McClendon felt the policy aimed at his half-brother, the recently promoted Assistant Fire Chief Derrick Clay and laid the matter at Croom’s feet.
“I’m asking you do you want to table it now or me veto it if you get six votes?” asked McClendon of Croom. “I have reason to veto this because its against this administration. I’m going to be honest with you. Every time this administration brings something, you are against this administration. Look at the past history. Since you’ve been on council we have hired cousins, sons and daughters and you never brought this up until now. I’m at the point now where I’m fed up with it. I’m giving you a chance to save face.”
During the business meeting that followed the heated exchange Councilman Tracy Catt asked to table the ordinance and await for an unbiased comparison study of the policy.
“I would like this tabled until H.R. can tell is what other cities are doing,” said Catt.
City Council voted in favor of tabling the ordinance inde_nitely and await the nepotism comparison study.