Boise City is taking apps for an ombudsman six months after the first and only one, Pierce Murphy, left to clean up the Seattle PD. The job pays up to $95K, but there may be problems for the guy or gal who take the post.
In a casual read it appears the job description doesn’t comply with the City Code (22-2) which details the duties and the rules by which the Community Ombudsman is to play.
Murphy wrote his own ordinance which made him pretty much bulletproof:
Here’s part of “Murphy’s Law,” B) “The Community Ombudsman may not be removed from office except for misconduct,inefficiency, incompetence, inability or failure to perform the duties of such office or negligence in the performance of such duties. In such cases that warrant removal from office, said removal shall be accomplished only by a resolution adopted in public hearing by either the majority of the full City Council upon recommendation of the Mayor or by a vote of no less than five (5) members of the full City Council…” The description posted claims the job is designated “At Will.”
Contrary to city code, the job description says the Ombudsman Performs other duties as assigned. Nothing in this job description restricts management’s right to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this position at any time. Total Percentage = 100%.
But then you have Murphy’s law again which says:
Section 2-22-08 INDEPENDENCE OF THE COMMUNITY OMBUDSMAN
A) The Community Ombudsman and any employee of the Office of Community
Ombudsman shall, at all times, be totally independent. Any investigations, findings,
recommendations and requests made by the Office of Community Ombudsman shall
reflect the views of the Office of Community Ombudsman alone.
B) No person shall attempt to unduly influence or undermine the independence of the
Community Ombudsman or any employee of the Office of Community Ombudsman
in the performance of the duties and responsibilities set forth in this Chapter.
The city code also outlines duties which relate strictly to monitoring law enforcement activities within the city.
The community and legacy media need to keep an eye on any attempts to mess with Murphy’s law.
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