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Hiram debates zero-tolerance policy for staff
by Savannah Weeks
sweeks@neighbornewspapers.com
September 20, 2012 10:30 AM | 1097 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Hiram City Council members discussed the hot topic of drugs in the workplace and a new playground for Hiram children at their Sept. 13 work session.

As it stands now, the city’s drug-free workplace policy is one of zero-tolerance for employees.

City Attorney Kelly Hundley advised new City Manager Robbie Rokovitz to remove the zero- tolerance portion of the policy.

“I like zero-tolerance,” Mayor Doris Devey said. “I worked under that for 17 years.”

Rokovitz said zero-tolerance does not allow for any flexibility when it comes to prescription medications and the American with Disabilities Act.

“This would allow for a case by case policy instead of zero-tolerance,” said Rokovitz. “Zero- tolerance policies sometimes go to the extreme.”

The item was to be on the city’s Sept. 18 meeting agenda.

In other news, the city bought a half-acre piece of land on the Cobb County/Paulding County line for the purpose of installing a “Welcome to Hiram” sign for motorists.

“I just need the access easement executed,” said Jody Palmer, city operations manager. “Then I’ll start moving forward with the project.”

Palmer also discussed replacing the current playground at the city’s park.

“I’ve been in contact with an architect about this project,” Palmer said.

Palmer said he was going to begin the bidding process. A previous project proposal was to exceed $200,000, design included.

Rokovitz informed the city council of the need to update its Short Term Work Program for review by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs and the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission.

An update to the short term work program must be submitted for the city to receive grants and other state funding, according to Rokovitz.

“It’s one of those state government mandate type of deals that we have to comply with,” Rokovitz said.

Council members also discussed the possibility of hosting a Christmas tree lighting ceremony this year as they have in previous years.

The council discussed Dec. 7 as a possible date for the tree lighting.

Councilwoman Teresa Philyaw and Councilwoman Kathy Bookout both said they supported hosting the event. The council will have the opportunity to vote for the event at their Sept. 18 meeting.

“Since we didn’t have our Fourth of July event, I think the citizens need to have our Christmas,” Devey said.

“It’s something people talk about for days,” said Councilwoman Earlene Graham.

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