Carson City Councilman Jawane Hilton took a rare move and stepped away from his chair, to deliver comments as a resident of the city of Carson during the August 3 meeting. He spoke out on the bullying both he and city employees have received at the hands of City Manager Sharon Landers. Hilton then demanded that the city council put Lander’s employment evaluation on a forthcoming council agenda.
Hilton said he was speaking out so the public would know about the toxic environment in City Hall.
“I am addressing this body as a lifelong resident,” said Hilton. “I am very concerned about our city manager bullying, discriminating, and her attitude towards employees and myself. Too many employees are afraid to speak out because of their fear of retaliation. I can no longer sit to the side and this must be exposed.”
He explained he is speaking out as a resident to let Landers know publicly, she can’t bully him and her behavior will no longer be tolerated.
“She covers up her bullying by hiding behind powers in our city charter,” said Hilton. “Her bullying ways must stop. I am a resident and approve this message.”
City Attorney Sanaz “Sunny” Soltani wanted to comment to clarify that in previous city council meetings employees were asked to come forward to her office with any complaints about the city manager.
“Any employees with complaints about the city manager should have come forward to my office and to date my office hasn’t received any complaints,” said Soltani. “This council body has invited any employee who felt threatened to bypass HR and come to my office and they haven’t.”
Councilman Jim Dear had questions of his own for the city attorney.
“You were directed by the city council to send email, letter, or some type of written or electronic communication, to every single city employee asking if they were willing to communicate their grievances, have you done that?” asked Dear.
“Mr. Mayor Pro-Tem, I may have misunderstood,” said Soltani. “I thought I provided my email and cell phone number for anybody that had a grievance. I am happy to send the email…I don’t have the employees emails…but I am happy to share that email so employees would have that in writing tomorrow morning.”
Dear corroborated that the employees “don’t feel safe from retaliation”.
“I am asking you publicly to please follow through because their is a morale problem in City Hall,” said Dear.
Mayor Lula Davis-Holmes then made an off hand remark that “morale was low during the recall”. Alluding to the recall of Dear when he was elected City Clerk.
“I don’t appreciate your smart aleck retorts because this is coming from employees and you are not a dictator,” said Dear.
Mayor Davis-Holmes appeared to be very dismissive of the employees concerns.