This had to happen sooner or later, particularly with the whole Stroger fiasco.
Test scores get changed in Cook County government for the benefit of politically connected job seekers just as they do at Chicago’s City Hall, according to a county Highway Department supervisor.
Eric Petraitis, 41, tells the Chicago Sun-Times he felt coerced by his bosses to change the low scores of clouted candidates for county jobs so they could be hired over qualified people.
Petraitis had just finished marking scores for two candidates he interviewed for equipment operator two years ago. One candidate scored very well. The other, Dwayne Robinson, got the lowest score, records show. Petraitis said he got a call from Gerald Nichols, patronage chief for former Cook County Board President John Stroger.
“The ink wasn’t dry on my paper,” Petraitis said. “The phone rang. It was Gerald Nichols. He said, ‘I would appreciate it if you would recommend Mr. Robinson.’ He wanted me to recommend the guy that’s not qualified. I just sat there, dazed, not knowing what to do. I had already filled it out.”
So Petraitis put away the “oral interview evaluation” form with Robinson’s low scores and wrote up a new one with better ratings for Robinson — who he would later learn was active in Stroger’s 8th Ward Democratic Organization, he said. He saved the first version, which appears with this story.
Read the whole thing.