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Dover mayor puts Council’s personnel moves on hold for now

| January 14, 2022
Dover Mayor Rick Homrighausen, Law Director Doug O’Meara, Council President Shane Gunnoe. (Photo by Bill Hammerstrom, WJER News)
Dover Mayor Rick Homrighausen, Law Director Doug O’Meara and Council President Shane Gunnoe. (Photo by Bill Hammerstrom, WJER News)

(DOVER) (WJER) (January 14, 2022) – Mayor Richard Homrighausen this week vetoed legislation that would have essentially cut two positions from his administration and reduced another to part-time. Council President Shane Gunnoe says Council will wait the required 10 days then meet to override the vetoes.

Homrighausen Thursday vetoed five ordinances Council unanimously approved Jan. 3.

The first is a response to Homrighausen’s firing of three popular city employees four days before Christmas.

“Ordinance 122 was an ordinance basically stating Council’s position on what we believe to be the retaliatory termination of Eva Newsome, Dave Douglas and Gerry Mroczkowski,” Gunnoe said.

The other four ordinances would restructure the positions impacted by the firings.

One eliminates the vacant mayor’s executive assistant post.

The other combines the full-time service director and part-time safety director positions. The new position would be part-time for $10 an hour. Last year those positions paid about $38 an hour.

Homrighausen has not returned phone messages, and Gunnoe says he didn’t explain his vetoes.

“He simply wrote ‘veto’ on all five,” Gunnoe said. “No statements were given.”

The ordinance states council will restore those positions if the fired employees are brought back or have had their day in court or before a state review board.

New service director starts

The city apparently has a new service director, even if how long that position remains intact is still in doubt. Gunnoe says Aaron Feller is now on the job after completing pre-employment screenings. He’s Homrighausen’s pick to replace Douglas, the long-time service director Homrighausen fired Dec. 21.

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