KPCW is reporting that Park City’s new Transit System’s Manager, Barbara Murdock, was let go from her last position for allegedly using company funds inappropriately. Ms. Murdoch has, in turn, sued her former employer (Birmingham-Jefferson County Transit Authority) stating gender discrimination and they didn’t communicate reasons for her termination.
What we don’t understand is how Park City hired someone with an uncertain (and possibly checkered) past for this position. In my own line of work, software development, we do a background check on every employee we want to hire. Our shop wouldn’t touch someone with a potential issue like this. We’re not sure why a prized jewel like Park City would take the risk.
Perhaps Park City Municipal asked to see her utility bills to confirm she didn’t use a company credit card to pay bills. Perhaps they asked to see her checking account statement to ensure she didn’t receive expense reimbursement for moving to Birmingham (since she had been there for a few years). Better yet, maybe she is so fabulous that the risk is worth it.
It just seems like Park City is taking a huge chance.
What we do know is that if Ms. Murdoch is charged with a crime in Alabama, she needs to be let go. Possibly if Ms Murdoch loses her civil case against the BJCTA, she should be let go. Either way, if one of those things happens, it should cast doubt on the decision making process of Park City Municipal.
Please don’t take this as a personal attack on Ms. Murdoch. I don’t know her. She may be a great person. The charges against her may be contrived, as she claims.
However, please do take this as a BIG QUESTION for Park City. There have to be countless professionals, skilled in transit, who would love to come to a place where transit is so important that buses are free. It’s odd that the city would pick someone that has questions surrounding her. It’s odd that Park City would choose someone that sued their previous employer.
Weird stuff happens here and we are not quite sure why. This is another example of it.
We’re reaching out to the Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall’s office to understand how we follow this case. We’ll report back as we find information.