Dayton employee fired for moonlighting gets job back

Published: Friday, October 20, 2017 @ 12:17 PM

Some City of Dayton workers might have to quit 2nd jobs

The city of Dayton must reinstate an employee it fired after the city alleged she worked a second job in conflict with her public employment and violated other personnel policies.

In its disciplinary proceedings, the city found Roberta Beyer failed to obtain permission from management before working a second job it says was incompatible with her position as a recreation facility specialist at the Dayton Convention Center.

Roberta Beyer was fired from her job at the Dayton Convention Center. But she won her job back on appeal. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF(Staff Writer)

Beyer, who was fired in February, also was found by the city of being unprofessional or rude to a client and requiring the city to pay overtime to another worker for a scheduling decision she made, city records said.

RELATED: City of Dayton employees now must report moonlighting

But city policy did not clearly specify when employees were supposed to notify management about their outside employment or what constituted a conflict of interest or prohibited employment, according to the Civil Service Board’s decision ordering Beyer’s discharge be reduced to an unpaid suspension.

Earlier this year, the city updated its policies to require all employees to seek departmental approval before seeking outside employment, and several employees have been notified their second jobs are in conflict with their city responsibilities.

Beyer has worked with the city as a recreation facility specialist at the Dayton Convention Center since 2010. She was first hired by the city in 1997.

RELATED: Dayton employee accused of metal theft wins job back

Beyer’s attorney declined to comment for this article. We have contacted the city of Dayton and will update this story when we receive a response.

In February, the city fired Beyer after ruling she violated three of its personnel policies and procedures.

The city said an investigation found that she did not get permission from management before working for the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, a union representing technicians, artists and crafts persons in the entertainment industry.

She did work at various locations, including at the Wright State Nutter Center and Schuster Center.

The city said the employment interfered with the performance of her work responsibilities at the convention center.

The city also concluded she scheduled an employee to work four hours of overtime and acted unprofessionally toward a client last November.

Beyer had “extensive” personal problems when she acted unprofessionally and should have taken the day off or should have been told to go home, the civil service board decision states.

But the Civil Service Board ruled against city claims that she was incompetent, inefficient or neglected duty.

The board, however, found Beyer neglected her duty to be fiscally responsible by scheduling the employee to work overtime, but they said the error did not merit her being fired.

The board also ruled that she did not violate the city’s code of ethics or personnel policies related to her outside job.

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Since 1992, city code has prohibited employees from engaging in incompatible employment, but it does not define or provide examples of what is prohibited by the charter or interferes with workers’ government job responsibilities, the board said.

The city in 2012 updated its policy to say that employees cannot have other jobs that hurt the quality or quantity of their job responsibilities or hold jobs that conflict with their “duties, obligations and loyalties” to the city.

Employees needed management approval when the supplemental employment was related to their city of Dayton positions, but employees were left to “police themselves,” and Beyer did not believe her other job conflicted with her city employment or required approval by her department’s director, the board said.

“Finally, there was no convincing evidence that appellant’s supplemental employment adversely affected her work for the city of Dayton,” the board’s decision states.

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In recent months, the city has issued letters to employees about the revised supplemental employment policy, and employees were required to submit requests to engage in additional work, city spokeswoman Toni Bankston said last month.

The city now has an ethics committee that considers requests for outside employment from city employees, and 11 requests went before the committee, Bankston told this newspaper last month.

Records obtained by this news organization indicate that three members of the Dayton Fire Department in September were told that their outside employment requests conflict with the their city positions.

They were told they would “forfeit their employment with the city” if they chose to engage in that supplemental work.

Dayton reaches $1.5M settlement over nuisance odors

Published: Wednesday, November 22, 2017 @ 2:48 PM

Dayton reaches $1.5M settlement over nuisance odors

The city of Dayton has agreed to accept a nearly $1.5 million settlement with an agricultural and industrial company over discharge issues that led to sewer blockages and foul odors.

Cargill’s corn milling plant in Dayton produces about 3 million to 4 million gallons of waste every day that is fed into the city’s sanitary sewer system, city officials said.

The city took enforcement action against the company because its discharge was causing blockages in the sanitary sewer as well as an unpleasant smell, said John Musto, Dayton’s chief trial counsel.

The blockage issues have been resolved, officials said, and the city and Cargill will work together to try to reduce smelly hydrogen sulfide levels in the waste water system associated with the company’s discharge.

“The settlement also provides a framework for the parties to work together to identify a cost-effective method for preventing odors in the city sewer serving the corn mill,” said Kelly Sheehan, spokeswoman for Cargill.

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Since 2014, the city of Dayton issued Cargill a series of notices of violation and administrative orders for not following regulations related to pretreatment of wastewater discharge, officials said.

The company, which has a plant at 3201 Needmore Road, appealed about 41 of the notices.

But the city and Cargill have reached a settlement in which the city agrees to rescind the notices of violation and the company will drop its pending appeals.

Cargill was required to pay penalties to the city to appeal the notices, which were held until the appeals were decided, Sheehan said.

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Under the settlement, the city will keep that money to help pay for odor control trials and sewer cleaning, Sheehan said.

“Cargill’s wet corn mill in Dayton, Ohio, takes great pride in operating in compliance with all environmental laws and Cargill’s own strict environmental standards,” she said.

Cargill also agreed to stop using lime in the pretreatment process last year, and there have been no blockages in the system since that time, said Musto.

Cargill and the city expect to discuss setting parameters on the company’s wastewater discharge to reduce sulfates in the system, which causes hydrogen sulfide, leading to stinky odors, Musto said.

The city wanted a resolution that addresses toxic odors in the wastewater system but that is also cost-effective for Cargill, who is an important employer and community partner, said Dayton City Manager Shelley Dickstein.

“This takes care of issues from the past,” she said.

Suspect in Pennsylvania police officer's shooting death in custody; mother also arrested

Published: Tuesday, November 21, 2017 @ 5:46 AM
Updated: Tuesday, November 21, 2017 @ 7:49 AM

Rahmael Sal Holt
New Kensington police
Rahmael Sal Holt(New Kensington police)

Rahmael Sal Holt, the suspect in the shooting death of New Kensington, Pennsylvania, Officer Brian Shaw, is in custody after a days-long manhunt.

>> Watch the news report here

Police had been searching for Holt since Friday night’s shooting. He was arrested Monday morning at a home on Ladora Way in Pittsburgh’s Hazelwood neighborhood after law enforcement agencies received a tip that he was there.

In addition to Holt, eight other people were arrested – including his mother.

>> Visit WPXI.com for complete coverage

Shaw, 25, was killed after he pulled over a Jeep on Friday in a traffic stop on Leishman Avenue. According to court documents, the Jeep never stopped and Holt, who allegedly killed Shaw, fled and Shaw pursued him on foot. 

>> Suspect named in Pennsylvania police officer's shooting death

Tavon Harper, who police say was driving the Jeep, took off, police said. Holt then fired multiple shots, killing Shaw, according to court documents.

Shaw was transported to Allegheny Valley Hospital, where he later died. 

>> Read more trending news 

WPXI confirmed with multiple sources that Shaw was ambushed that night and at least one of the bullets went through a soft spot in his body armor.

Trenton youth on bicycle struck by car

Published: Saturday, November 18, 2017 @ 6:31 PM

Trenton police are investigating after a youth on a bicycle was struck by a car early Saturday evening.

A police dispatcher said the accident happened about 5:45 p.m. at East State Street and Sal Boulevard.

MORE: Weather watches, advisories in effect

The dispatcher said the youth was taken to an area hospital but that no further information was available.

Jail captain charged with assault for pepper-spraying inmate

Published: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 @ 6:22 PM

Brookville woman pepper sprayed in seven-point harness at Montgomery County Jail

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office captain whose pepper-spraying of a restrained inmate — and disappearance of records of the incident — spurred a federal probe and civil lawsuit pleaded not guilty today to a misdemeanor assault charge.

Capt. Judith Sealey was charged in Dayton Municipal Court on Nov. 8 for pepper spraying Amber Swink while Swink was strapped into a restraint chair in the county jail in November 2015.

“We entered a not guilty plea on her behalf,” said her attorney, Anthony VanNoy. “I believe it’s the wrong charge. I believe they should not have charged her criminally.”

“I recognize what the video depicts, but it doesn’t tell the entire story of what went on.”

After Montgomery County Prosecutor Mat Heck Jr. announced in May that a grand jury found there was insufficient evidence to bring felony assault charges, the case was referred to Dayton city prosecutors to consider misdemeanor charges.

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Dayton Chief Prosecutor Stephanie Cook handed the decision on whether to press charges to Cincinnati city prosecutors. Dayton officials said they wanted to avoid any appearance of conflict because Cook sits on a jail advisory committee created in response to lawsuits from Swink and others.

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Swink settled her lawsuit against Montgomery County in August, with the county paying $375,000.

Federal agents have not announced any findings in the case, which includes concerns over how and why video and other records of Sealey pepper-spraying Swink disappeared from county records and only surfaced through Swink’s lawsuit.

RELATED: Missing paperwork raises questions about pepper spray probe

This news outlet reached out to Montgomery County Sheriff Phil Plummer for comment. This story will be updated if comment is received.