Hiring Policies Under Review

BLYTHEWOOD – Town Council took a look at its hiring policies and procedures during their Jan. 14 work session. While Councilman Bob Massa reported that the Town’s hiring policies adhered closely to those of the S.C. Municipal Associations’ handbook, he said he would like to change the Town’s policy to require the Town government to solicit from both inside and outside Town Hall when hiring.

Town Administrator Gary Parker said he had no objection to that, but would suggest promoting from within first when possible.

“Then, if there are no great internal candidates, we’ll go outside,” Parker said.

The discussion follows the Town’s recent hiring of the Town’s outside legal consultant, Jim Meggs, as the Town’s attorney as a full-time employee, not a consultant. The job was not posted or advertised before Meggs was hired.

In regard to nepotism (hiring relatives of elected officials), Councilman Bob Mangone took the discussion a step further, suggesting the Town should not purchase from or do business with relatives of elected officials or those appointed to the Town’s boards and commissions.

Parker said that while that is standard with governments, the law sometimes recognizes that in small communities, contracting or making small purchases from relatives of town officials is allowed because it is almost unavoidable. The issue is expected to be on the agenda for a vote at the Jan. 26 Council meeting.