2 City Officials Suspended Risk Management Operations Probed

Article excerpt

Jacksonville Mayor John Delaney suspended two senior City Hall officials yesterday because of an internal investigation into the daily operations of a city division.

Cindy Crow, 36, previously cited by Delaney as a rising star in his administration, heads the Regulatory and Environmental Services Department, and John Jones is chief of the department's Risk Management Division, which is being investigated by the mayor and the City Council.

Delaney declined to answer questions about the specific extent of the city's investigation, which he said focused on the "management" and "day-to-day operations" of the division.

Risk Management, which has an annual budget of $23.5 million, essentially runs the city's self-insurance program and oversees workers compensation and other claims against local government. Each year the division handles about $70 million.

Crow and Jones, who are suspended with pay for at least a month, are not suspected of taking any city funds, Delaney said.

It is the first time the mayor has ever placed an appointed official on administrative leave.

Risk Management came under increased scrutiny last month when the administration moved the division from the Administration and Finance Department to Regulatory and Environmental Services.

During discussions, it came to light that Crow and Jones had not been fully "open and cooperative" with an independent audit of Risk Management, Delaney said. …