Conroe, May 29 – Montgomery County Judge Craig Doyal has revealed an obsession with the nepotistic relationship upon which he depends upon County Treasurer Stephanne Davenport who employs Doyal’s daughter. While it’s a classic example of the harm of nepotism within government, it’s also sad for many other County employees as well as for Doyal’s daughter herself.
During the Tuesday, May 23, 2017, Commissioners Court meeting, Montgomery County Tax Assessor-Collector Tammy McRae made an brief, yet excellent, presentation concerning some cost savings she has made within her County Department. Precinct 3 County Commissioner James Noack lauded her for the excellent management work on her part. McRae announced she was saving $36,601.26 in spending and stated she hoped to include those savings as “part of the 5% savings” she’d propose for her County Department for the Fiscal Year 2018 Budget.
What was sad, however, was Doyal’s reaction to McRae’s excellent work. Rather than merely complimenting McRae for her fine work, Doyal used the opportunity as an excuse to reveal his obsession with Davenport. He said to McRae in open Court, “I’m proud of you for doing that [saving money], much like Stephanne Davenport did earlier.”
In March 2014, Davenport presented a proposed “reorganization” of her 6-person department during which she slammed the County Human Resources Department for a “huge lack of integrity.” Davenport and the Human Resources Department butted heads over Davenport’s original proposal for her reorganization in which the documents she submitted showed that Doyal’s daughter, who works as a payroll clerk in the Treasurer’s Department, would receive a major promotion and pay raise for the newly-created position of “Assistant County Treasurer.” Even though the documents Davenport submitted to the Human Resources Department show that they were “prepared by Stephanne Davenport,” Davenport claims that someone else “mistakenly” submitted those documents showing Doyal’s daughter receiving a promotion.
That Doyal would raise the issue of Davenport’s reorganization during a presentation by McRae that had nothing whatsoever to do with the County Treasurer revealed his obsessive attempt to make Davenport, the boss of his daughter, look good.
Doyal has intertwined himself with the County Treasurer’s Department for several years since his daughter began to work there in 2010 when Davenport hired her. Davenport was an administrative assistant in 2010 but County Treasurer Martha Gustavsen gave Davenport the authority to interview and hire an employee. Davenport hired then County Commissioner Craig Doyal’s daughter.
On January 27, 2014, Craig Doyal seconded and voted for a motion in the Commissioner’s Court to demote the long-serving Patricia Reaves, from the position of Payroll Coordinator to a lower paying position of Administrative Assistant. At the same time, Doyal seconded and voted for increasing the salary of his daughter and promoting his daughter to the position of Payroll Coordinator from which Doyal and County Treasurer Stephanne Davenport had removed Reaves!
In October, 2016, Doyal asked Precinct 3 County Commissioner James Noack if Noack would support promoting Doyal’s daughter to the position of Assistant County Treasurer.
When Davenport presented her departmental reorganization on March 14, 2017, she explained that she needed to get the reorganization accomplished as she was overworked and needed to hire an assistant county treasurer into the department as soon as possible. Since that time, even though several outstanding applicants have applied for the position, Davenport has still not hired anyone.
In an exclusive interview with The Golden Hammer on February 19, 2017, Davenport stated, “By definition, nepotism is an abuse of power. Nepotism does not occur in my department. Yes, I house the daughter of the County Judge. However, the County Judge does not interfere with the day to day operations of my employees.”
The nepotism involving Doyal’s daughter is quite sad. She might be a fine employee but instead, due to the relationship, has the image that she was hired and repeatedly promoted – with direct efforts of her father – solely because of the nepotism.
The nepotism is also sad because rather than focusing on the excellent work of other County employees, such as McRae, Doyal remains obsessed with the supervisor of his daughter.