WAYNESBORO, Miss. (WDAM) - The Waynesboro mayor vetoed the Board of Aldermen's recommendation to rehire 60 former city employees as a group on Tuesday. The mayor said each person needs to be hired and approved on an individual basis, not as a group, though a majority of aldermen recommended to hire them with a single vote.
The positions in question are called “holdover employees,” who have to be rehired within the first 180 days of a new administration, and includes 16 police officers and the entire fire department. The deadline for their rehiring was midnight on Friday, Dec. 31.
Mayor Richard Johnson and the five aldermen were supposed to meet for a special meeting Friday at 4 p.m. to rehire the employees who worked for the city in Johnson's first term, but a lack of quorum prevented a vote after only two aldermen showed up.
Earlier this month, the board did vote to rehire all employees at once, but Johnson vetoed that decision. The board failed to override his decision.
Johnson said the city does have contingency plans in place for the police, fire and public works departments. He said the city will pull in resources from surrounding counties and municipalities until a rehiring agreement can be made.