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Council to decide on city clerk position

Decisions about filling the open city clerk position could be made next week when City Council considers several items about the process.

Former City Clerk Lorene Krumm was fired at the Feb. 23 City Council meeting after 15 years of service to the city.

According to section 8(c) of the Boulder City Charter when a city officer is removed, “City Council will appoint a person as a temporary replacement until a permanent replacement can be found.”

“Existing Boulder City ordinance provides that Tami McKay, as deputy city clerk, has the authority to assume the responsibilities of the city clerk when there is a vacancy,” said Communications Manager Lisa LaPlante. “The City Council will consider appointing Ms. McKay acting city clerk during the March 9, 2021 regular City Council meeting.”

If McKay is appointed as the acting city clerk, council will also set her compensation for that position. In the past when acting city officers have been named, they have been paid the same salary of the person who left.

LaPlante said the council will consider the recruitment process at the March 9 meeting to hire a permanent replacement.

Krumm is the third city officer fired in almost five months. Former City Attorney Steve Morris and former City Manager Al Noyola were fired Oct. 13 in a 4-1 vote by council.

LaPlante said the application process for those openings ended Feb. 19 and 89 applications for the city manager position had been received and nine for the city attorney.

“There will be (a) special meeting held March 23rd to discuss next steps,” she said.

That meeting will start at 9 a.m.

LaPlante said the city could fill those two positions in April or May.

Mayor Kiernan McManus requested the item to dismiss Krumm. It was approved 4-1 at the almost six-hour-long Feb. 23 meeting. Councilwoman Claudia Bridges voted against it.

Krumm said she wasn’t surprised by the decision.

“The promise to fire the three appointed officials was well known prior to any of them taking the oath of office and confirmed by numerous public comments from certain members of the public … urging the council to ‘do what we elected you to do,’” she said after the meeting. “What was obvious was the scripted, orchestrated efforts by the four members to use blatantly false statements to justify their retaliatory actions.”

On Feb. 23, McManus said he did “not have confidence that Ms. Krumm” was performing the duties and obligations required of her. He said her competence to provide information to City Council, staff and the community was “deficient in significant ways.”

During the meeting, more than 40 people, including state officials, residents and past city employees expressed their support of Krumm as city clerk.

In a complaint filed in August 2020 in Nevada’s Eighth District Court, Noyola and Morris said McManus had been accused by various city employees of “religious discrimination, harassment, bullying and creating a hostile work environment.” In their second complaint, they accuse the city of violating their contracts and state law by not yet paying them their severance packages after they were fired Oct. 13.

They also said they had experienced discrimination by McManus and Councilwoman Folda and had filed complaints into alleged “retaliatory” actions with the Nevada Equal Rights Commission.

Krumm said she is a part of the hostile workplace investigation, but she did not single out McManus.

A recent investigation by POOL/PACT determined McManus’ alleged actions had not violated any city policies.

Contact reporter Celia Shortt Goodyear at cgoodyear@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow her on Twitter @csgoodyear.

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