The Carmel City Council’s committee of the whole met Sept. 29 to discuss and recommend changes regarding how certain employee complaints are The Carmel City Council’s committee of the whole met Sept. 29 to discuss and recommend changes regarding how certain employee complaints are handled.
The meeting was the result of a council investigation into the city’s handling of a harassment complaint against former City Attorney Doug Haney, which several councilors believe took too long and created a hostile work environment. The council aims to update its procedures to ensure a similar circumstance doesn’t happen again.
One change is a new contract with HRD Advisory Group to create an employee critical claims hotline to be used for complaints that involve unethical or illegal activity or for when an employee is not comfortable bringing a complaint directly to the city. HRD also can provide investigation services for cases the city chooses not to handle itself.
Several councilors said they want to receive more information about significant complaints, such as those against department heads or those reported directly to HRD. Councilors asked Human Resources Director Barb Lamb to notify them of those types of complaints within 10 days.
Councilors asked interim City Attorney Jon Oberlander to present a quarterly update on significant complaints being investigated by the city or HRD. The council will work with Lamb and others to set guidelines on what triggers a complaint being sent to the city council.