Darrell Clarke’s Greatest Hits: He’ll Keep The Keys From City Staffers, But City Staffers Not Being Kept From The Keys Is Not The Problem
So the story (which you may have heard by now) goes a little something like this: Two City Council staffers, who were not supposed to have access to city vehicles, got arrested for DUI in said city vehicles. City Council receptionist Robin Jones forgot she wasn’t playing a game of GTA when she drove a city-owned Chevy Cobalt into a building in the early hours of Saturday morning. Her first move after the accident was to called sergeant-at-arms Rodney Williams, who rushed to the scene in his own city-owned vehicle that he was not supposed to be driving. He was also intoxicated.
Both staffers were fired, swiftly, by City Council President (and possible future mayor?) Darrell Clarke, who then went into full-on defense mode. Clarke said the keys for the cars, which should not have even been driven by these staffers sober, will be locked away, but refused to acknowledge that the ease of access to the keys was part of the problem. It’s like one of those half-apologies where someone says they’re sorry for your reaction to something, but not the thing itself. Clarke said, “At the end of the day, if a policy is in place, and the rules and regulations are in place, if somebody decides not to follow them and to go unauthorized and take the keys to the car, it doesn’t matter what that policy is,” although keys being in a locked drawer seems to be a pretty good amendment to the policy, if not an obvious part of the policy to start with.
City Controller Alan Butkovitz in investigating the whole city-vehicle use program, so this is probably just the tip of the iceberg to what will be a very interesting story. But just remember, in Darrell Clarke’s eyes, anyone can drive a city car, but don’t you even think about parking your bike outside of a bar.