Civil Service Matters on Hold

Meridian, Miss. Meridian Civil Service Commission members are just days away from a meeting to determine whether their removal will be upheld.

At least two recent firings at the Meridian Police Department were among cases expected to be heard soon by the Civil Service Commission. But Mayor Percy Bland suspended four of the five commissioners this week, all but the one he appointed.

Civil Service Commission attorney, Henry Palmer, attends regular meetings and advises the commission on points of law throughout its business. He says he was surprised by the mayor's action, since he said he believed they had always tried to follow the appropriate guidelines.

"All of them that I have seen seem to really try to listen, be attentive and do right as they saw it," said Palmer.

In the meantime, city hiring is on hold as are the hearings for some fired police officers.

The hearing for Don Hopkins was set for Feb. 11 but his attorney, Bill Ready, Jr., says now that hearing could be delayed up to two more months.