Civil Service Commission

NameResident DistrictTerm Exp
Charles McNutt District Three (Pride, District Three) March 1, 2024
Lee Harvey, Chairman District Three (Henderson, At-Large) December 31, 2024
Brendan Williams District One (Leighton, District One) March 1, 2023
Vacant District Two (Lewis, District Two) March 1, 2025
Pedro Vazquez District Two (Bruzgo, At-Large) December 31, 2025
Vacant District Four (Caricchio, District Four) March 1, 2022
Ben J Arthur District Five (Dhalac, District Five) March 1, 2026

Reference – Code of Ordinance – Chapter 19

The Civil Service Commission meets on demand.  Their meetings are sometime held at the South Portland Community Center and the Public Safety Building

Seven members are appointed by Council for a five year term.



Sec. 19-1.  Commission established.

There is hereby established a civil service commission which shall consist of seven (7) members appointed by the city council, all of whom shall be residents of the City of South Portland, one from each of the five (5) voting districts of the city who shall be a resident of the district for which he or she is appointed and two (2) members from the city at large, who will serve for a period of five (5) years without pay.  Before entering upon their duties, the commissioners shall take the oath of office before the city clerk.  The commissioners presently serving shall continue to serve for the remainder of their terms, and shall be subject to reappointment.

(a)  Vacancies.  Appointments to fill vacancies shall be for the unexpired term.  Vacancies shall be governed by Code of Ordinances Sec. 2-121.

(b)  Chair and secretary.  The commission shall in June of each year elect by majority vote one of its members to serve as chair and one of its members as secretary who shall hold office until their successors are elected.  The commission may by rules establish such other offices as it shall deem necessary and appropriate.

(c)  Meetings.  The commission shall establish, by vote, a time and place for its regular meetings and shall meet each alternate month.  Special meetings may be called at any time by the chairman and a special meeting, must be called upon request from a majority of the commissioners.

The commission shall forward a tentative agenda to the City Clerk's office including the date, time and location of the meeting of the commission by no later than 9:00 a.m. on the Friday preceding the meeting date, but no event less than three days before the meeting.

(d)  Quorum.  Four (4) commissioners shall constitute a quorum for all purposes except a disciplinary hearing under Rule 7, in which case five (5) commissioners constitute a quorum.  Any matter that may properly come before the commission may be acted upon without prior notice.

(e)  Expenses.  All expenses incident to the operation of the commission shall be paid by the city.

(f)  Retaining outside legal counsel.  Legal questions raised by the Civil Service Commission should be directed to the City's Corporation Counsel.  In the event of a conflict of interest, an independent counsel will be hired for the Commission at the City's expense.  Additionally, there may be times when a particular question will require an extensive time commitment or specialized knowledge and experience and the Commission may request or the City may choose to hire independent additional counsel.

If the commission believes there is a need for independent or additional counsel, it shall notify the City Manager in writing.  Independent or additional counsel will be authorized by order of the City Council in consultation with the Commission as to who the independent or additional counsel may be, the duration of the authorization, and the amount of money that may be expended.

Independent or additional counsel for the Commission shall be a reputable firm or attorney with experience in municipal, administrative, and/or personnel and labor law.  Both the Commission and the Council shall consent to the choice of an attorney or firm.  Such consent shall not be unreasonably withheld.  The procurement process for independent or additional counsel shall conform to the requirements of the City's purchasing ordinance, section 2-169.

Once the independent or additional counsel has been selected, an agreement as to the subject matter, duration and fees has been reached, and the City Council has authorized the representation, the commission shall directly contact its counsel, and vice versa, on all representation within the scope of this section.  Bills for such authorized services will be the responsibility of the City.

(g)  Removal of commissioners from office.  Commissioners may be removed from office by the City Council for failure to attend at least 75% of the commission's meetings over a 12-month period;  for being convicted of a crime involving moral turpitude; or for intentionally and knowingly violating any provision of this chapter.  A commissioner who violates the confidentiality required by this chapter shall be removed from office by the City Council.

Sec. 19-2.  Purpose of commission.

The commission shall adopt a system of rules, subject to the approval of the city council, based on merit principles, and shall administer those rules, on all matters relating to the appointment, promotion, demotion, layoff, reinstatement, suspension and removal of members of the police and fire departments, for the purpose of representing the public interest in the improvement of personnel administration in such departments.

Sec. 19-3.  Disciplinary action.

It shall be the duty of the commission to represent the public interest by reviewing upon appeal disciplinary action involving demotion, suspension, or dismissal of employees subject to this chapter.  During such review, both the disciplined employee and the person who disciplined the employee shall have the right to be heard, to be represented by a person of his or her choice and to present evidentiary facts.  At the hearing, technical rules of evidence shall not apply, and the burden shall be upon the person who has taken the action to justify such action.  In conducting the hearing, the commission shall have the power to administer oaths, issue subpoenas, receive relevant evidence, compel the production of books and papers relevant to the hearing and to question witnesses.  The commission shall rule only on the basis of the evidence presented at the hearing, and the findings and decisions of the commission shall be final and binding.

Sec. 19-4.  Penalties.

Whoever violates any of the provisions of this chapter, or any of the rules established pursuant to this chapter, shall, upon conviction, pay a fine not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100.00), for each such offense.  Any applicant violating the provisions of this chapter or rules established pursuant to this chapter shall be excluded from further consideration of employment.  Any candidate on an eligible list violating the provisions of this chapter or rules established pursuant to this chapter shall be excluded from the eligible list.

Any officer, commissioner, or employee of the City who violates the provisions of this chapter, or any rules established pursuant to this chapter shall be disciplined, up to and including removal from office.  It shall be the responsibility of the city council to determine whether any officer, commissioner or employee has violated this ordinance;  and if necessary, the appropriate discipline and remedy.

Sec. 19-5.  Repealing clause.

All ordinances or parts of ordinances inconsistent herewith are hereby repealed and superseded.