City of Canton employees, especially department heads and other senior-level employees, must be walking on eggshells these days, wondering if they might be the next target of the same indiscriminate Hobgood-Cummins ax that sent Scott Wood and David Cangemi packing without warning.
No discussion about deficiencies. No discussion about how the boss wanted the job to be better performed. No discussion at all. Just clean out your desk and follow this nice police officer out the door to the unemployment office.
If I were one of those remaining senior-level city employees, I would be polishing my resume and preparing a Plan B, just in case. And if I were a young, talented prospective employee, I would surely think twice about interviewing for one of the senior positions here, given that I couldn’t count on staying around regardless of how well I perform my duties.
Hobgood-Cummins may well not be done with their public servant housecleaning. Who knows? And who knows who the new, full-time city manager (if they can find one willing to come into this environment) will go after once he or she is hired and given the same authority and encouragement to dismiss employees at will?
An 1887 quote from Lord Acton, a famed British historian, is worth recalling: “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”