Convicted city worker never told supervisor

Posted at 12:15 AM, Jan 11, 2013
and last updated 2013-01-11 07:28:10-05

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) - Richmond's auditor recommended the city start conducting periodic background checks on its employees.

This comes after finding out, through a recent investigation, that a Department of Social Services worker was convicted of dealing marijuana last year and didn't alert his supervisor.

“Why didn't we know about it? I don't know,” said Reva Trammell, Chair of Richmond City Council's Public Safety Committee.

She wants to look into the issue. Currently, the city has a self-report policy in place, only requiring an employee to notify their supervisor of any criminal drug related conviction.

“This is not the first incident," Trammell said.

The worker in this case, is still employed with the city and was also charged with drinking at a bar with a concealed weapon. 

“I find that unusual,“ Jan Bazow said, who is with the Fortis Group, and a long-time human resources executive.  Bazow told CBS 6 that she doesn't understand why the employee was only placed on un-paid leave after being convicted and violating the city's self- report policy.

“As the Inspector General's report indicated, the Department of Social Services acted as soon as it became aware of the misdemeanor charge," said a city spokesperson. "As this matter is related to personnel actions, we cannot comment further.”

When it comes to the city doing intermittent background checks as a result of this finding, Bazow said it'll be tough.

“Most employers want to operate on a base of trust." "Many employees may think that's an invasion of privacy," Bazow said. 

Trammell said she plans to bring the auditor’s recommendations up at her next public safety meeting.