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Former Gray HR Director Grilled at Hearing on Hirings

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On the third day of council hearings, four out of the five witnesses declined to show up – the only witness, former human resources director Judy Banks faced tough questions about her role in the hiring of children of administration staffers and consultants, as well as the hiring of Sulaimon Brown, the former mayoral candidate who claims the Gray campaign paid him cash and promised a job for his support.

A key issue at the hearing was who initiated the hiring of Brandon Webb, the son of former Employment Services Director Rochelle Webb.

Banks claims it was Fire Chief Kenneth Ellerbe, but the fire chief and other witnesses, as well as an email chain, contradict that.

Other topics included the hiring of Sulaimon Brown and the steep salary increases.

The council will hold one more hearing next Friday.

Council member Mary Cheh, who is leading the investigation, is hoping all of the remaining witnesses will come forward. Cheh says she hopes the council will look at changing how political appointments are made by the mayor.

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