TOLEDO, Ohio — A federal magistrate has ruled that the city official fired by Philip Hawkey for mismanaging Toledo's housing program is entitled to a name-clearing hearing.
But U.S. District Court Magistrate James Carr also determined that Bernard (Pete) Culp was not fired from his job as commissioner of renewal operations because of his race, nor was he protected under the Civic Service Commission, two of the main arguments Culp had pressed against the city.
Hawkey, now city manager of Pasadena, was Toledo city manager when he fired Culp in 1988. Toledo's black community rallied behind Culp, and the controversy followed Hawkey to California, causing racial animosity when Pasadena city directors selected him over two black candidates in April.
Culp's firing, instigated by a review of his operations by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, exacerbated Toledo's uneasy racial tensions.