Secretary's pay raise prompts political fight
An Annapolis Fire Department secretary who was given a raise at the mayor's urging has become embroiled in a political squabble.
A city alderman requested a legal opinion after learning that Mayor Alfred A. Hopkins had awarded the secretary a raise without the City Council's approval and while the city is reviewing all of its job descriptions.
City Attorney Jonathan A. Hodgson has determined that secretary Pam Como's salary was increased because her position was reclassified, which requires a new or revised job description. New job descriptions must be approved by the council.
"I would think that it's appropriate that it be sent to the group that is studying job classifications" for review, he said, referring to Yarger & Associates, which is conducting the citywide study.
The mayor said he followed the advice of the city personnel director in giving Ms. Como a raise because her workload had increased substantially. He recalled that 29 workers received raises through reclassifications by mayors in the past who did not seek council approval.
"There's nothing wrong with it," he said.
But Alderman Carl O. Snowden, a Ward 5 Democrat who requested the legal opinion, said the reclassification must be endorsed by the council. Mr. Snowden said if the reclassification is not declared void, he will urge his colleagues on the council to overrule Mr. Hopkins.
The mayor recently decided not to reclassify a firefighter's position after the union opposed the move. Firefighter Anthony J. Spencer was supposed to be promoted to lieutenant, but the union complained the reclassification appeared specifically tailored for him.
"Tony Spencer went through the process," said Mr. Snowden, who supported the salary increase for Mr. Spencer. "The mayor never went through the proper channels."
Student teacher accused of assault
A student teacher at a Prince George's County high school has been arrested and charged in the sexual assault of a 14-year-old Annapolis girl.
Richard Anthony Thomas Jr., 22, of the the 12000 block of Laurel-Bowie Road in Laurel was charged with committing a fourth-degree sex offense and abduction of a girl under the age of 16.
Police said the man drove to the Annapolis Terrace Motel Friday about 4 p.m., where he allegedly enticed the girl inside and had sexual intercourse with her.
Mr. Thomas is a student teacher at Frederick Douglass High School in Upper Marlboro, county police said.
Six women to receive first tribute awards
Six women will receive the first Tribute to Women of Color Awards at an 11 a.m. luncheon Saturday at the Holiday Inn in Annapolis.
Rose Wiseman will receive the Pathfinders Award for forging new trails; Emma Pickett the Good Samaritan Award for her behind-the-scenes contributions; and Donna L. Vauls the Service to Youth Award for tutoring and counseling troubled youth. Three young women will receive Future Leader Scholarships. Glen Burnie High School sophomore Tershia Ann Pinder and Meade High School graduate Anita Dashiell will be given Nationwide scholarships, and Old Mill High School graduate Angela Hawkins the Dr. Faye W. Allen Scholarship.