Mayor Art Magee said early this month that he is ignoring a request by the city law director to resign after he claimed the mayor became involved over the possible discipline of his son-in-law, who is an employee in the Water Department.
Law Director Jeffrey Adler made the request April 6, telling council that Magee became involved after it was learned his son-in-law, Jim Bowers had been driving a city vehicle without a driver's license since July 2007.
Bowers needs a license for his job, and the service director wanted to discipline him, but Magee stepped in and became involved, Adler said Tuesday. He told council that Magee should consider stepping down, according to the minutes.
Magee said Service Director Lionel Epperson told him there was a problem, and Magee told him they would straighten it out. Magee said Bowers has been reduced in pay two grades and can't drive a city vehicle until he gets his license, which he was trying to get back Tuesday.
''The point is we took a casual approach to it,'' Magee said.
The discipline agreement was reached after talks with Bowers' supervisor and Epperson, Magee said.
''That should satisfy the law director,'' Magee said.
Epperson could not be reached for comment.
Adler said he was informed by police Chief Martin Kanetsky that a city employee did not have a license and that he then contacted Epperson before telling Kanetsky to find out who the person was. After he found out it was Bowers, Adler said he sent a letter March 30 informing Epperson of the employee and the offense. He sent another letter the next day restating the offense and warning that allowing an employee without a license to drive a city vehicle could result in serious legal issues if there were an accident.
Magee became involved sometime between the first and second letters, Adler said. He said Magee should have stepped aside, especially when the employee involved is his son-in-law.
Adler said he contacted the Ethics Commission, and they told him there was no violation, but there was an ''air of impropriety.'' He said Magee put his personal interests above the interests of the city.
Magee said he would have made the same effort for any employee who was a good worker.
''He's (Adler) way out of his lid,'' Magee said. ''It was very unprofessional and totally uncalled for.''