Monday, January 16, 2017

City Employees Allowed Some Political Speech, Activities

An ordinance amending the rules for political activity by city employees is on Tuesday's agenda. Employees would still be barred from such activity while on the job, but citing First Amendment guarantees for freedom of speech including political speech and activity, it opens the door to certain partisan political activities.

click to enlarge

If truth be told, the original rules were quite often transgressed. Under previous administrations, I have seen a bag lady collecting political contributions in City Hall. Many employees belong to and work for political organizations. In the past there have been certain pressures on employees to support candidates, especially if the employee holds a patronage job.

So maybe this amendment clarifies and supports the First Amendment rights of city employees or maybe it just legitimizes past practice. Employees are still forbidden to do political work on city time.

The combined agenda-fixing and regular meeting is 7 p.m. Tuesday (Jan. 17) in Municipal Court. Don't forget, you can contact your council representatives by email if you have an opinion.

1 comment:

  1. In the spirit of the 21st century, all hands on deck for hyper partisanship, especially when they all take the day off from work the Monday before the primary to go canvassing. Mapp's team will regret this as soon as the tide shifts.