Huntsville has fired its city secretary just two years after she was promoted to the position.
The Huntsville City Council voted 5-3 Tuesday to remove Brenda Poe based on a performance evaluation, effective immediately. No comment was given by council members who met behind closed doors for over two hours.
The city secretary's dismissal comes following months of lengthy and sometimes heated meetings out of the public eye, where city council members have discussed the performance of both the city secretary and city manager.
Her removal also comes weeks after she officially received her municipal clerk certification.
According to files obtained by The Item through a public records request, Mayor Andy Brauninger and city manager Aron Kulhavy have been communicating towards Poe’s possible dismissal dating back to September 2019.
Kulhavy has also come under fire from the city council multiple times over the past year, starting in September 2020 after he missed five consecutive city council meetings for an undisclosed health reason. His contract will be up for renewal in June.
Poe had worked for the city for over six years, beginning as a circulation clerk for the Huntsville Public Library. In 2017, she was hired as deputy city secretary under former secretary Lee Woodward, who resigned in 2019 to take a similar position in La Porte.
The office of city secretary provides support, assistance and information to the city council, preserves city documents and offers election services to voters and candidates for public involvement in local governance. The city secretary is one of four charter officers (along with the city manager, city attorney and city judge) appointed by and directly reporting to the mayor and city council.
According to the city charter, Poe will have ten days to request a hearing before the city council.