Politics & Government

Chairwoman of embattled Rec Commission to step down

FILE PHOTO: J. Marie Green, left, and Norman Jackson, Richland County Councilman, speak during the opening of the Garners Ferry Adult Activity Center and Technology Center. The center has meeting rooms, classrooms, a fitness center and a computer lab.
FILE PHOTO: J. Marie Green, left, and Norman Jackson, Richland County Councilman, speak during the opening of the Garners Ferry Adult Activity Center and Technology Center. The center has meeting rooms, classrooms, a fitness center and a computer lab. tglantz@thestate.com

The chairwoman of the embattled Richland County Recreation Commission will not seek reappointment when her term ends in February.

J. Marie Green said the decision has nothing to do with legislators’ demands that she and other board members quit.

“When my time is up, I will have served 15 years, and I think I’ve done my fair share,” Green told The State on Tuesday. Her term ends Feb. 27, 2017.

A majority of the Richland County legislative delegation has demanded Green and four other Recreation Commission board members resign in response to recent turmoil at the office.

The legislators have threatened to remove the five board members if they do not quit.

“There are 10 members of this delegation, including me, that feel like the governor needs to remove five board members immediately,” said state Sen. Joel Lourie, D-Richland. “Our position is unchanged. The events over the last week only strengthen our feelings.”

Former Recreation Commission director James Brown last week was indicted on a count of misconduct in office and accused of using his position to coerce female employees into having sex with him. He retired Monday.

Legislators have said Green and four other board members disregarded a hostile work environment for employees, failed to take appropriate action in response to allegations of sexual harassment and approved irresponsible pay increases for Brown, among other grievances.

Green said Tuesday she is proud of her work on the commission’s board. She was appointed in February 2002.

Green said she does not know of any other board members’ plans.

Avery G. Wilks: 803-771-8362, @averygwilks

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