Kim freaked out Tuesday when his department received a mayoral memo about the “Use of the Human Resource Administrator.” In short, the memo advises the four commissioners that Marcie Brydges, the aforementioned administrator, is an employee of Johnson’s department and should therefore report directly to the mayor on any personnel issues.
Naturally, the ‘shoot everything in sight first and forget about the questions’ commissioner wasn’t pleased by this missive. By his tone, one would assume an armed coup is being waged in City Hall at the moment, instead of Johnson merely exerting the authority provided to him under and rightly cited in the city charter.
“This is a power-grab by the mayor,” Kim blurted out to the Post Star. “What he’s saying is that he also wants to get involved in enforcement,”
Power grab? That’s an interesting choice of words seeing as though the mayor’s office is weakest among all commissioner seats in terms of power. In fact, the mayor’s primary function in recent years has been to appoint his or her friends to the land-use boards and chair the council meetings.
Editor’s note: In the writer’s zeal to seem somewhat balanced and not completely out to prove Ron Kim the dolt his is, there was a paragraph here alluding to Johnson’s uncanny ability to misspell his human resource director’s name. This criticism has since proven to be utterly and completely unwarranted, so the segement of the passage and it’s accompanying photo have been retracted. So, without further delay, we return to the normally scheduled post.
However, the more important issue is Kim’s rather ludicrous assertions, which always seem to overshadow even the most egregious errors made by other politicians. As usual, Kim’s limited intellect is bereft of any knowledge of recent city events; mainly who hired Brydges and how she ended up with a job in the first place.
Those who take a cursory look into the politics of yesteryear would find the ‘human resource administrator’ position was mandated by revisions to the city charter adopted by the council in 2001. For both financial and civil service reasons, the position wasn’t immediately filled.
It wasn’t until the Erin Dreyer scandal touched down in 2004 that then-Republican Mayor Michael Lenz hired Brydges to the position, which streamlined all personnel issues from all departments into one department under the mayor’s office. Lenz was even criticized by city Democrats for not filling the position earlier.
Other mayors directly involved themselves in human resource issues, namely Kim’s beloved Valerie Keehn. Remembering back to the fall, it was Keehn who involved her office and the city attorney in helping a convicted felon sue the city Public Works Department; something that obviously involved human resources’ reporting to the mayor’s office at some point.
Summing things up: it was the Dreyer scandal in the Public Safety Department that led to a Republican mayor appointing a new civil service position to oversee the four fiefdoms of City Hall for any malfeasance, among other duties commonly associated with human resources. This person was appointed by and answers to the mayor’s office. In other words, Ron Kim is a moron.
Since the departure of Keehn and DPW fixture Tom McTygue, there’s been a slight movement away from the back-biting politics of the past. It’s not to say there aren’t resentments among the city councilors, but that they haven’t roiled publically. Kim has tried in vain to shatter this tentative poise in just about everything he’s said and done in his new term. And given the roots of his partisan-driven vitriolic deputy, there’s really little doubt as to why Kim is suddenly trying to roar like a lion.