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Monday, September 20, 2021

Ocala City Council member says audit shows Ocala Fire Rescue Chief termination followed protocol

An Ocala City Council member says he asked the city auditor to conduct an audit of the recent firing of former Ocala Fire Rescue Chief Shane Alexander. 

Ocala City Council member Jay Musleh, who will seek reelection this September, made the remarks at the end of the council’s meeting on Tuesday, July 20.

“I would generally like for it to die down, but probably not,” said Musleh. Musleh indicated that people had a “right to come up” and make public comment, alluding to multiple residents who spoke during Tuesday’s on Alexander’s termination and Ocala City Manager Sandra Wilson. 

“People have the right to come up, make a public comment. I wouldn’t think of taking that right away,” said Musleh, before explaining that he asked the city auditor to conduct an “audit of the termination process.”

According to Musleh, that audit did not cover the reasons for termination, but rather, covered “the process” that the City of Ocala has in place to terminate employees.

Musleh says that process “fit the policy” of the city. 

“That’s kind of where I’m at,” said Musleh to close his comments.

During the July 6 meeting of the Ocala City Council, Musleh voted against a motion from council president Justin Grabelle to terminate the contract of City Manager Sandra Wilson.

Although Musleh expressed his support for Wilson during that meeting, he called into question the reasons for Alexander’s termination, saying he did not “agree with the human resource file and how it was constructed.” 

Musleh is seeking reelection for his District 3 seat this September against Russell Juergens and Ty Schlichter.