After brief removal, Camden parking head returns

Posted: July 31, 2014

Angel Alamo sat quietly at the head of a conference table at Monday's Camden parking authority meeting, having fended off a City Council attempt to remove him.

Alamo, chairman of the authority's board of commissioners since 2009, sued the city after a July 8 vote to replace him with Jose Martinez Jr.

The vote came after it was determined that Alamo was also working as a clerk in the finance department.

State law says a commissioner - an unpaid appointment - cannot also be an employee.

The day after the council meeting, Alamo resigned from his position with the city. Two days later, he sued the city in Superior Court, alleging he was improperly removed without a hearing or notification.

Two council members, Dana Burley and Brian Coleman, said at the July 8 meeting they had concerns about whether procedure was followed and voted no on the resolution.

The resolution also included the appointment of Sheila Davis to fill the term of Sanders Kendrick Jr., who resigned in April, and the appointment of Shaneka Boucher to fill the expired term of Michael B. Jordan.

The board of five commissioners has one vacancy and one holdover, Jordan, and has had trouble reaching a quorum.

One week after Alamo filed the lawsuit, Council President Frank Moran wrote a letter on behalf of the council to the state Department of Community Affairs requesting a "friendly veto" of the resolution.

The DCA issued the veto July 17 "due to procedure and the pending litigation." It voids the entire resolution, including the appointments of Davis and Boucher.

DCA spokeswoman Tammori Petty said the veto came at the urging of council members "who expressed a desire to ensure appropriate process prior to personnel actions being taken that could mire the City in litigation."

At Monday's parking authority meeting, Alamo, whose term expires in February 2019, called his return "a good thing," but declined to comment further.

The council will likely revisit Alamo's position on the board as well as other appointments to the board at its August council meeting.

Councilman Arthur Barclay, who introduced the resolution to replace Alamo, declined to comment. City attorney Marc Riondino also declined, both citing the pending litigation.

Mayor Dana Redd attended the parking authority meeting and told commissioners "other big announcements are already cued up" for Camden.

The mayor said the authority will need to facilitate the construction of at least two parking garages and will continue to play a large role in coming city development projects.

856-779-3876 @juliaterruso

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