Skip to comments.Shelve library board's racial ploys
Posted on 08/12/2003 10:03:19 PM PDT by optimistically_conservative
| Photo, L-R: Katharine Suttell, Nancy Powers, Janet Bogle, attorney Kelly Beard, Mary Starck, Maureen Kelly, Sherri Bowers, Jean Cornn, Jo Lynn Burge. From pages 28-29 of the Appeals Court's June 6th ruling:
"...Appellants' wrongdoing was more than mere accident. There was evidence that, in the face of repeated warnings, Appellants intentionally discriminated against the Librarians on the basis of race and used trickery and deceit to cover it up under the guise of a 'reorganization.' Furthermore, Appellants intentionally discriminated against the Librarians with full knowledge of recent cases of employment discrimination against other Fulton County officials which resulted in jury verdicts for the plaintiffs or [in] settlements....The punitive damage award was both reasonable and proportionate to the amount of harm done to the Librarians and to the general damages recovered."
Sometimes, it's difficult to put a price on how much bad government costs taxpayers. Other times, it's painfully clear: $17 million.
That's what the malfeasance, incompetence and racial politics of the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System have cost the residents of Atlanta and Fulton County.
A federal court judgment in 2002 awarded $17 million to seven white librarians after concluding they were victims of discrimination by the library, members of the board and Mary Kaye Hooker, who still runs the system. Taxpayers might have found consolation in the assumption that neither Hooker nor anyone else in the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System would practice discrimination again after such a costly lesson.
No chance. The Fulton County Office of Equal Employment Opportunity, which operates under the county manager, just announced that library officials continued to engage in racial discrimination even after the federal court judgment. An assistant county attorney told the Atlanta-Fulton County Public Library Board of Trustees last week that the library system retaliated against two women who were plaintiffs in the discrimination lawsuit.
Ranked first by a review panel for a position, one of the women was passed over in favor of a lower-scoring black applicant. The board followed the lawyer's advice and voted belatedly to offer the white woman the job. The board is still looking at the second case.
The library's joint city-county board is notorious for micromanaging the system and running off competent staff. Its own consultants recommended cutting the board from 17 people to seven, but the members clung to their seats like junkies to their stash.
Special legislative action created the board; the board must be reconfigured the same way. It's time that the House and Senate members of the Atlanta-Fulton delegation suppress the board so that it finally stops playing racial politics at taxpayer expense.
The folks who were discrimminated against.
It's costing the taxpayers alot .