Citizens of Calumet City show support for Clerk Figgs

Citizens of Calumet City show support for Clerk Figgs
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Citizens of Calumet City show support for Clerk Figgs (Calumet City, IL) – This morning, several residents of Calumet City gathered at Pulaski Park across the street from City Hall to show support for their longstanding clerk, Nyota Figgs.

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Figgs, who recently came forward with allegations that newly-elected Mayor Thaddeus Jones has been blocking her from performing her duties, said that she has been working from the park for about three weeks now because she feels uncomfortable working from within the building. “I feel bullied,” said Figgs. “The environment there has become hostile. I feel that I cannot properly perform my duties if Mayor Jones keeps acting like this.”

Figgs stated that Jones has begun to remove several duties from her office, including the issuing of business licenses, animal licenses, vehicle stickers, and more. Some of the duties she has been stripped of are statutory. She has also been told to no longer create the agendas, and since she has had that duty taken away, she said that the last several meetings have been held illegally. Jones has also allegedly removed several employees from her office. Those employees now report to the mayor’s office.

Among her supporters at Pulaski Park were activist Wallace “Gator” Bradley, former Dixmoor trustee Michael Smith, and current Calumet City alderman J.R. Patton.

Mayor Jones released a statement today stating that he has not stripped any duties from Figgs, but that those duties were stripped in 2012 by former mayor Qualkinbush and JR Patton. He also stated that the clerk has mismanaged parking tickets and has failed to collect funds from those.

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Furthermore, a text message went out to several residents this morning, stating, in part, “The City Clerk makes $214,000 a year, and only works TWO DAYS A WEEK!”

Screenshot obtained my The Southland Journal of a mass text message that went out to several, possibly hundreds or thousands, of Calumet City residents.

In response, Figgs stated that the former mayor never stripped her of her duties, and the support that J.R. Patton has shown her these recent weeks are a testimony to her ongoing working relationship with him. She also went on to clarify that the parking tickets collections were halted due to COVID. “Court was cancelled. Each parking ticket comes with a court date, and if the vehicle’s owner can’t go to court, then the ticket cannot be enforced. How can I collect on that?” Figgs also jokingly stated that if she made $214,000 per year, as the text message stated, then she is owed some back-pay. She went on to say that as long as her duties as clerk are fulfilled, there is no required number of hours she needs to work. She also said that she works from home, works in the community, and now, the park. A search of public databases puts the clerk’s salary at $114,000 in 2017.

Figgs also told the Southland Journal that she has been in contact with the Illinois Attorney General’s office. “If I cannot fulfill the statutory duties of my office, which I can not do right now, I have an obligation to report it to the Attorney General.”

Figgs said that in the end, she just wants to continue to fulfill her duties to the citizens of Calumet City. “I love what I do. I enjoy being an asset to the community and hope that Mayor Jones and I can come to some sort of understanding soon, because in the end, it will be the citizens who suffer.”

Citizens of Calumet City show support for Clerk Figgs

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