Posted 8:51 PM 9/4/2012 : City employees face firing amid allegations of theft
TUCSON - Corruption in Tucson city government, we've heard a lot about it in recent weeks.
The City of Tucson is dealing with several recent allegations.
Last week, several transportation employees were served notice of intent to discharge, others got warnings of disciplinary action.
It all stems from the City's investigation into the misuse of resources across the department.
High level executives are among those who may lose their jobs.
As many as a dozen city employees could be disciplined, or face firing this week.
The so far unnamed employees are accused of misusing city property and equipment.
All will get the opportunity to plead their case to keep their jobs at a private hearing Wednesday and Friday.
"First of all they deserve their due process. But secondly once that plays itself out, if they're guilty they should be shown the door," says ward six council member Steve Kozachik. He worries about the city's image.
All this comes on the heels of two ex-golf employees being investigated for theft.
And a TCC staffer being suspended, pending an investigation. The city won't comment on the nature of that investigation.
With an upcoming bond election, if the allegations are true, Kozachik calls it a blow to the city's credibility.
"It's going to make people think twice about do I really want to give you folks another $100 million dollars if I'm not sure it's going to be treated respectfully," says Kozachik.
Can the city overcome what many consider a black eye for Tucson?
Mayor Jonathan Rothschild says yes, by being responsive, and holding employees accountable.
"Well one, it is never good when something like this happens. But the message we're trying to send out is that, it's a new day here at the City," says Rothschild, "we now have a stable and strong administration and we're going to do the right thing."
Results of this week's internal hearings will be announced soon after.
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