Posted at: 01/14/2014 5:43 PM
Updated at: 01/14/2014 6:26 PM
Mayor Lovely Warren says she welcomes an investigation into the hiring of her uncle. On Tuesday afternoon, the mayor says she's willing to cooperate with a city board of ethics investigation. City Council called for the probe after talks of Warren hiring a security detail, which included her uncle.
News10NBC is hearing from the president of City Council just hours after Mayor Warren says she's looking forward to the investigation and says she's focused on getting back to city business.
City Council President Loretta Scott says they received a tremendous number of calls about the appointment of the mayor's new security detail. Because of that and because the head of that detail is her uncle, the council has turned the matter over to the city's Board of Ethics for investigation. Mayor Lovely Warren says she is eager to cooperate with the ethics board.
The hiring of her uncle, Reggie Hill, has set off a firestorm of criticism. While he is related, Hill is also a retired state police investigator who worked security details for past governors. His salary is $80,000.
The board of ethics will determine if the hiring was done in accordance with civil service requirements and whether it violates the city's anti-nepotism policy, specifically, Section C4 of the city's code of ethics, which reads no city officer or employee shall treat any person more favorably than it is the custom and practice to treat the general public.
The ethics board is made up of seven people, all appointed, whose findings are recommendations, not final decisions.
Scott, who is one of the board members, promised a thorough investigation.
Loretta Scott said, "We need to get a ruling so that we can move on because this has been so consuming over the last few days."
Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren said, "Now that this matter is before the board of ethics for review and their process, I am fully willing and able to do whatever they ask me to do and give them whatever information they need to move forward."
As far as a timeline, it's likely to be a few weeks before the board even begins its review. Right now, there are two vacancies on the board that are scheduled to be filled later this month. Those ethics board meetings are public and News10NBC will track their progress as they work through this investigation.