Hattiesburg council declares temporary hiring freeze

Hattiesburg council declares temporary hiring freeze

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The Hattiesburg City Council voted in a special called meeting Monday to declare a temporary hiring freeze for all city positions.

Council members voted 4-0 in a one-minute meeting to enact the hiring freeze. Ward 2 Councilwoman Deborah Delgado was not present.

"What we're doing is putting a hiring freeze on as of today (Monday) for the next two and half weeks until the new administration takes place, and then we're going to let Mayor Barker decide what positions he wants to put people in," said Carter Carroll, Hattiesburg City Council President. "He may want to change the way the structure is for different departments, so we're just going to give him the opportunity to make the changes he needs, instead of trying to add people right now when we don't know if those positions are going to be necessary or not."

Carroll also added that the freeze include any movement of personnel, including transfers.

"We're just going to stay status quo for the next two and a half weeks until Mayor Barker gets in and can oversee the transition," Carroll said.

Carroll said hiring freezes are common before new leadership takes office and said the council enacted one in between the Ed Morgan and Johnny DuPree administrations in 2001.

Mayor-elect Toby Barker and new council members begin their terms on July 3, and the first regular council meeting with newly elected leaders is scheduled for July 5.