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Emanuel Closes Daley-Created Hiring Office

By Chuck Sudo in News on Jul 14, 2011 3:30PM

Here's another way for City Hall to save millions - do away with unnecessary offices. That's what Mayor Emanuel did by ending the Office of Compliance to no fanfare.

The Office of Compliance was established by former Mayor Daley four years ago after one of many hiring embarrassments found by then-Inspector General David Hoffman, as a means of trying to get out from under the Shakman decree. Last year, Inspector General Joseph Ferguson recommended Office of Compliance head Anthony Boswell be suspended for his part in handling a 2008 sexual harassment complaint by a student intern against a high ranking deputy in the city's 911 call center. Federal hiring monitor Noelle Brennan, appointed by the courts to ensure the city is in compliance with Shakman, and attorney and Shakman decree plaintiff Michael Shakman accused Boswell of ignoring and covering up violations. Boswell later filed a lawsuit against the city claiming former Corporation Counsel Mara Georges engaged in a "retaliation campaign" after he brought up Georges' own alleged efforts to manipulate hiring, and claimed his suspension was illegal.

Oversight for city hiring was transferred from the Office of Compliance to Ferguson's office last year. The remaining responsibilities of the office will be transferred to the city departments of Human Resources, Procurement Services, Streets and Sanitation, Finance and the Board of Ethics, pending City Council approval. The move by Emanuel to eliminate the Office of Compliance will save taxpayers $3.6 million.