Wednesday evening, during a special meeting of the Marlow City Council and the Marlow Municipal Authority, a clearly divided council voted 3-2 to terminate Janice Cain as city administrator effective immediately.
The council and municipal authority met in executive session for just over an hour. According to the meeting’s agenda they were to discuss the employment status of Cain.
Upon returning to open session, councilman Dan Ross made the motion to terminate Cain. Councilman Don Ridley seconded the motion. City clerk Betty Mackey, polled the councilman for their vote.
Bob Hill – yes
Wes Walker – no
Dan Ross – yes
Mickey Hoy – no
Don Ridley – yes
While taking comments from citizens, Cain said, “Since I am now a citizen, I have a comment. I want to give you (the council) official notice tonight that I will appeal this termination.”
Afterward, Cain had additional comments.
“When Bob Hill became mayor, his agenda was clear. He had an agenda the whole time,” she said. Cain was referring to her removal of then, police chief, Hill in Feb. 2010, amidst alleged inconsistencies in testimony given by Marlow police officers during the Robert Shawn Williams’ drug hearing.
According to a press release issued by the city in early 2010, “Based on those discussions (with Chief Hill), the decision was made that the best interest of the community would be served by seeking new leadership for the Department.”
Last Wednesday’s meeting had just two items of business. An executive session to discuss Cain’s employment status and an item to take action based on the executive session’s discussion.
The combined meeting of the Marlow City Council and Marlow Municipal Authority (MMA) was tense from the beginning.
As MMA trustees and council members voted to go into executive session, Dr. Wes Walker voted no. The remainder agreed to go into executive session.
When they returned to open session, city attorney, Tom Fraily advised the MMA to take no action and adjourn their meeting. MMA trustees did so.
Once the city council was back in open session, Walker proposed the council subject Cain to a 6-month Plan of Improvement and review it with her.
“I don’t want to rush into anything,” he said. “We should evaluate it like we have in the past.”
Councilman Mickey Hoy told the group, “A Plan of Improvement (POI) may be unusual in this setting. If (POI) objectives are not met, then we can act later. After 15 years of service, we need a longer look at this.”
On Walker’s motion for a 6-month Plan of Improvement; Ross, Hill, and Ridley voted no. Walker and Hoy voted yes. The motion failed.
Dan Ross then offered his motion ... to terminate the city administrator immediately. Don Ridley seconded Ross’ motion.
Walker proposed amending Ross’ motion to be to terminate in six months after a Plan of Improvement had been implemented.
Walker’s amendment failed 3-2, with Hill, Ross and Ridley voting no.
Ultimately, Ross’ motion was voted on and passed.
During “Citizen’s comments,” an unidentified audience member asked Ross what the council’s reason was for terminating Cain.
At the time, Ross declined comment, but he did comment on The Marlow Review’s Facebook posting about the firing.
“I made the motion to terminate the City Administrator. Janice Cain has done a great job as the City Administrator. She has guided this city through some very difficult times and did so in a professional manner. I am not aware of anything other than a difference in philosophy that Janice and I had and that is the reason I made the motion and cast my vote. I am not at liberty to discuss anything that was said in executive session, that is privileged information. With that said, Janice is a very talented individual that strives to do the right thing, and I would endorse her for any future endeavor,” said Dan Ross via Facebook last Thursday evening.
Posted in: News
By John Hruby
Jun 27, 2013 - 9:01:25 AM
By John Hruby
Jun 27, 2013 - 9:01:25 AM