Friday, August 24, 2012

TOP STORY >> City attorney’s absence explained

Leader staff writer

Jacksonville and its civil service commission had no representation at a hearing in Pulaski County District Court when the city attorney failed to show up Tuesday.

City Attorney Robert Bamburg was informed weeks in advance about the disciplinary hearing for a suspended firefighter. Bamburg filed a motion late Monday afternoon to get the date moved and then didn’t come to the hearing after the court called him to say it was denied.

Bamburg has made it a practice to not respond to The Leader’s requests for comments.

Officials with the district court also didn’t return a call from The Leader.

Mayor Gary Fletcher said the attorney found out about the hearing Monday and the Little Rock courts know he is unavailable on Tuesdays.

That is the day Bamburg has to be at Jacksonville District Court, the mayor said. That court hears traffic offenses on Tuesdays.

Fletcher also said Bamburg tried to call the court but couldn’t reach anyone.

Fire Capt. Scott Moon was recently suspended a day and a half for misconduct. The hearing concerned his appeal of that disciplinary action. Bamburg told Moon that he couldn’t object to the punishment in court because it wasn’t a three-day suspension.

A workday is considered to be eight hours long. Moon is arguing that because firefighters work 24-hour shifts, a day and a half is 36 hours, three workdays for him.