Personnel committee will await parks director’s decision on employee

The Pine Bluff Parks and Recreation Commission’s Personnel Committee decided in a Monday meeting that before possibly becoming involved in the matter, it would await Parks and Recreation Director Angela Parker’s disciplinary action against Sports Coordinator Keith Taylor.

Taylor is accused by Parker of misconduct in relation to an Aug. 28 incident occurring during a softball game at Townsend Park. A player was ejected after allegedly cursing and threatening umpire Booker Mays. Disagreement exists over rules governing Taylor and participants in the softball program, and how long the offending player should be barred from games.

After a 40-minute executive session, commission chairwoman Kami Hunt said panelists were in agreement that it was Parker’s responsibility to determine and take any corrective action against Taylor. Hunt said the committee might then meet on the matter.

Should Taylor be terminated, he would have five days to appeal his dismissal to the full committee.

Mays expressed dissatisfaction with a lack of police presence at Townsend Park during softball games there, calling it “unacceptable.”

Evelyn Horton, Mayor Debe Hollingsworth’s chief aide, said Interim Police Chief Jeff Hubanks had told her that an officer will be assigned there in the future.

During a broad discussion on details of the incident among several committee members, panelist Roy Tolson intervened and asked that the conversation be focused on the personnel issue at hand.

Parker, meanwhile, was heavily questioned by committee member Chris Blunt on her involvement in the matter. She told him she had not gone to the park at the time of the incident because of family activities.