COMMERCIAL POINT – Commerical Point Trustees, reinstated Porter “Chip” Welch as Chief of Scioto Township Fire Department last night in the public trustee meeting, then they immediately suspended him. Scioto Township Trustees terminated Porter “Chip” Welch effective immediately on August 16, 2018, at the public meeting, and under Ohio revised code 733.37, Ohio Revised code 733.35, and Revised code 505.38 the law may not have been exactly followed under these codes, and maybe the the reason why he’s been reinstated and put on suspension pending hearing on January 15. Neither Commercial point Trustees or Pickaway County Prosecutor Judy Wolford that was at the meeting last night would expand upon the reinstatement, but the Trustees did give a reason for the Townships Chief Porter Welch would be suspended.
The reason trustees gave were, “misfeasance, malfeasance, nonfeasance, misconduct in office, gross neglect of duty. As fire Chief Chip Porter Welch falsified time sheets that did not reflect the hours he worked, as Fire Chief Child Welch ordered fire personnel to falsify fire inspections, as fire chief he failed to maintain an adequate fire prevention program, failed to conduct investigations of commercial buildings. As fire Chief mishandled and harassed a part-time firefighter resulting in the firefighter’s accusations being emailed to numbers parties including the individual she accused of harassment. As fire chief Porter Welch failed to follow the Township Policy on sexual harassment and failed to adequately investigate a claim of sexual harassment from a Pickaway Institute correctional officer. As Fire Chief Chip Welch issued improper discipline to firefighters that did not conform to the township policies to negotiate a contract between the Township and IAF local. As Fire Chief Chip Welch mismanaged department budget. As Fire Chief Chip Welch instructed a medic to determine the cause of death on a patient based on impermissible non-medical factors. As Fire Chief Chip Welch failed to attend board of trustee meetings that are required. As Fire Chief Chip Welch failed to follow directives issued from the board of trustees, and As Fire Chief Chip Welsh failed to inform the board of Trustees about a dead inmate transported at PCI that exposed the Township to liability.
On August 27, 2018, Welch Legal Services LLC has filed a civil lawsuit against Scioto Township asking for a praecipe and filing for a appeal on the termination.
Porter Welch will be afforted the ability to respond to the council through himself or council at the January 17,2019 meeting. Trustees said they will appoint an independent investigator to investigate these charges.
We will keep you informed of the information as it becomes available.