No Change For Pekin City Manager Job, Following Council Discussion

Sep 28, 2015

The Pekin City Manager's job status remains unchanged.  The Council discussed Darin Girdler's employment behind closed doors Monday night.

After more than an hour in executive session, the council didn't take any vote on Girdler's contract.  No more details were given about the specific issues raised with Girdler during the closed-doors meeting. 

Earlier in the open-session portion of the meeting, several residents voiced concerns about Girdler, but were stopped from sharing full specifics by Pekin Mayor John McCabe, like during this exchange he had with a resident:

MCCABE:  “Then you should simply tell us which way you want us to vote and then please sit down.RESIDENT: “I wanted to explain why, before you vote.”MCCABE:: “But the problem is that when you’re explaining why you’re getting into complaints and charges against the city manager, and those need to be placed in writing and then submitted to myself through the city clerk.”

McCabe says that the city has a policy that requires formal complaints be in writing, and that public comments do not include comments that are difficult to be substantiated.  He says that position is supported by the Illinois Municipal Handbook:

“Written by Ancel Glick which is one of the most respectable municipal law firms in probably the Midwest, and they specifically state in there, and they use case law to support it, that this is something you don’t let happen in open meetings.”

McCabe says the Council will take another look at Girdler’s employment after his performance review early next year.