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City set to fire another transportation worker, discipline others

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City set to fire another transportation worker, discipline others

The City of Tucson is moving to fire another worker in the Transportation Department, and will discipline several others, according to a memo from the city manager.

Thursday morning, one employee in the Engineering Division was issued a notice of intent to discharge, and "several other employees" from that division were given notices of intent to discipline, Manager Richard Miranda told Mayor Jonathan Rothschild and the City Council.

"The notices were served following an investigation into misuse of computers," Miranda wrote.

A source in the Transportation Department said Thursday that officials had investigated workers who allegedly viewed Internet pornography on their city computers.

Thursday's move to fire one worker follows an announcement Tuesday that the city intends to terminate "five or six" Transportation Department workers for unspecified wrongdoing.

While city officials cited civil service laws in keeping mum on the details, that move stems from a nearly year-long investigation into allegations of materials and equipment theft.

The Tucson Police Department began investigating those accusations last fall. Workers in the department's Streets and Traffic Maintenance Division are suspected of doing side jobs for personal gain using city equipment and materials such as asphalt and fill dirt.

Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, City Manager Richard Miranda and new Director of Transportation Daryl Cole announced the move to fire the workers at a Tuesday afternoon press conference, but refused to offer many details.

In all of the cases, those served with notices can defend themselves in "pre-discharge" or "pre-disciplinary" meetings to be held within seven days.

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