We suffered a glitch. This article was posted on February 8th, the addendum to this article is posted in another article which has an addendum and update to this one. Find the other with comments by readers by way of this hyperlink… sorry for the confusion. — Kindly, Hezi
The Mount Vernon City Council Meeting That Never Convened Hezitorial
MOUNT VERNON, NY — February 8, 2020 — On January 28, 2020, Mount Vernon Deputy Clerk Lauren Carter was called into Mount Vernon Clerk George Brown’s office by City Councilman Marcus A. Griffith and Human Resource Commissioner Nina Crispino. Ms. Carter was that day informed that January 2, 2020, would be her last day. Upon being advised Ms. Carter asked if a City Council meeting was conducted at which a majority vote, a minimum of 3 of the 5 City Councilmembership approved that decision. She was personally advised by Councilmember Marcus A. Griffith that he had attended the council meeting with Mount Vernon City Council President Lisa Copeland, among the other councilmembers who met and had in the majority voted she be relieved of her responsibilities.
Further inquiry revealed that Councilmembers Delia Farquharson, Janice Duarte, and Derrick Thomson had not attended a “said” city council meeting to which they were not advised was to convene, that they did not attend such a meeting as they were not ever formally advised a city council meeting was to convene.
The Mount Vernon City Council is comprised of five members in total, the president and four councilmembers. Since the Mount Vernon City Charter requires a majority vote to dismiss Deputy City Clerk Lauren Carter, that is, a minimum of 3 votes cast for dismissal out of a total of the maximum 5 members convening. With three councilmembers asserting they were not even aware of such a meeting, it becomes an impossibility that President Lisa Copeland’s telling that a majority vote was cast to dismiss Ms. Carter cannot be credible because her telling has simply not been corroborated by three Mount Vernon City Councilmembers who did not any such meeting as allegedly espoused by President Lisa Copeland.
Read the following text that speaks to the issue as per Mount Vernon City Councilmember Delia M. Farquharson:
ONE ROOSEVELT SQUARE, ROOM 104
MOUNT VERNON, NY 10550
(914) 665-2352 · FAX (914) 668-6044
DELIA M. FARQUHARSON CITY COUNCILWOMAN
CHAIR, STANDING COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC SAFETY AND CODES
CO-CHAIR, STANDING COMMITTEE ON LEGISLATION AND PUBLIC WORKS
January 28, 2020
I was informed this afternoon that the Deputy City Clerk Lauren Carter was dismissed by City Council
member Marcus Griffith. I was not aware, and I disagree with this decision.
I subsequently conferred with two other council members who told me that they too were ignorant of this decision, and they did not agree with the decision at this time.
A competent deputy city clerk with nine years of experience in the office is not being afforded the opportunity to elevate to the office of clerk, as has been granted to many deputies before her. This is being done to make way for political favors, and a political appointment in the office of the city clerk. What is also curious is that the budget proposes wage increases for the position of the Deputy Clerk and City Clerk.
The office of the City Clerk performs an important function in the city and must be staffed competently to support the work of the city council members.
Delia M. Farquharson, LCSW
City of Mount Vernon, New York
= = = = =
Deputy Clerk Lauren Carter has yet to receive an official notice of dismissal from the Mount Vernon City Council. Ms. Carter continues to attend to her office every mid-week day but is restricted from carrying out all her responsibilities.
Mount Vernon Clerk George Brown has stated his intention to retire by the end of February.
Lisa Copeland had on her Facebook page posted that the City Council had indeed dismissed Ms. Carter. The Facebook posting to that effect had however been deleted shortly thereafter. Which questions the integrity of Ms. Copeland’s initial posting, yet thereafter removed.
The disparity of conduct by Mount Vernon City Council President Copeland is juxtaposed by three Mount Vernon City Councilmembers who refute the assertion that a City Council meeting took place and that a majority was present as the majority of City Council members were not even informed of such a meeting. The issue has become the catalyst that has fomented distrust of Ms. Copeland’s telling and a petition demanding the Mount Vernon City Council abide by and adhere to the protocol delineated by the City Charter and is publicly announced. An online petition demanding a public vote is available online. People may cast their online vote without divulging their name.