When the City of St Gabriel incorporated it's charter required a Fire Chief be appointed for the City. The Mayor decided to appoint the chief of the local Volunteer Fire Department, which served the fire district, as the town's paid fire chief. The Fire Chief would work out of the parish owned stations and wear both VFD and city FD hats at once. When the City got the budget to hire firefighters to man the stations they depended on the Chief to recommend who should be hired. The firefighters, like the chief, would "wear two hats" being members of the VFD, which allowed them to operate the parish owned trucks, and at the same time be paid employees of the City FD. So where does the Chief hire from? The volunteer pool of course. The members are already trained on operation of the Parish owned Fire Trucks and have bunker gear issued so there is no cost to the City except for salaries.
Now, think for a moment, who makes up most of the membership in many small VFDs? Yep, you guessed it. Family members of the Chief. And who do you think the Chief recommended for hires with the Paid City FD? You guessed it.
Well, it seems that about a year ago someone tipped the State Labor Board and Ethic Board to some things happening in St Gabriel and investigations began.
Now 4 former paid Firefighters, members of the Chiefs family, are fined $500 each for violating the State's Ethics code against Nepotism. Ouch.
The judgements can be seen at-
It will be interesting to see if the Chief and the City are fined next or if this is the extent of the rulling.
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Thread: SGFD FFs charged with nepotism
05-19-2006, 09:57 PM #1
SGFD FFs charged with nepotism
Last edited by cellblock; 06-04-2006 at 11:44 PM. Reason: spellingSteve
06-10-2006, 08:57 AM #2
Fire chief to pay for nepotism
By MARSHA SHULER
Capitol news bureau
Published: Jun 9, 2006
Story originally published in The Advocate
The St. Gabriel Fire Department chief has agreed to pay a $2,000 fine for violating state nepotism laws.
The Louisiana Board of Ethics signed off Thursday on the consent opinion ending the case against Chief Floyd Sanchez, who hired four relatives as firefighters.
There was no public discussion of the case.
The Ethics Board found that Sanchez hired his daughters, Brandy Duncan and Tonya LeBlanc, son-in-law Brian Chambers and prospective son-in-law Gene Duncan and signed their payroll checks.
Gene Duncan married Sanchezís daughter Brandy 10 months after his employment, documents said.
The board found Sanchez violated the ethics law that prohibits members of the immediate family of an agency head from being employed by his agency.
Another ethics provision bans public servants from participating in a transaction involving the government entity in which his immediate family member has a substantial economic interest.
By signing the family members time sheets, Sanchez violated that law too, the board concluded.
Sanchez had faced a $4,000 fine but the board suspended $2,000 of it provided he complies with state ethics laws.
Brandy Duncan was on the payroll as a part-time, paid firefighter from Aug. 1, 1997, until May 30, 2004.
Tonya LeBlanc was a part-time paid firefighter from July 1, 2001, until July 1, 2004, when she became a full-time firefighter. She served until Feb. 28, 2005, when she was fired.
Chambers and Duncan were also fired on that day. Chambers and Duncan had been part-time firefighters since July 1, 2001.
06-16-2006, 03:44 PM #3
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