Globe City Councilwoman Charlene Giles, representing District 5, submitted her resignation this month after admitting to violations of the open meeting law and city code of ethics for public officials.
Giles announced her decision in an April 5 email to City Clerk Shelly Salazar, which City Manager Paul Jepson read aloud during an April 6 special meeting of the city council. “I am informing you I am quitting the Globe City Council for District 5,” the message ran.
The meeting was called in order to accept Giles’ resignation, which the attending councilmembers did in a 5-0 vote (Giles and Councilman Jesse Leetham were absent). Councilman Mike Pastor made the motion, which was seconded by Councilman Freddy Rios. There was no further discussion before the vote.
In a Feb. 9, 2021 meeting, the council removed Giles from leadership positions on three community boards after violating the open meeting law and the city code of ethics for public officials. Addressing the council during that meeting, attorney Tina Vannucci of Fitzgibbons Law Offices said that at the conclusion of the investigation Giles admitted that there was an open meeting law violation, she negligently violated the code of ethics and, because she was upset over accusations against her spouse, made statements critical of an employee. The city incurred $31,000 in legal fees investigating those violations.
After Giles’ resignation was accepted, Councilman Fernando Shipley asked whether it would affect the council’s ability to form a quorum. He was assured by City Attorney William Sims it would not change the quorum.
The council will take up the question of replacing Giles at their April 13 regular meeting. Jepson said a process would be ready for their discussion by then. He said the city was legally required to replace her, but there was no mandated time period to do so. “There is no rush to replace a member, but you’d want to do it sooner rather than later,” he added.