The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


December 21, 2013

City Attorney resigns, will receive six-month severance package


The contract makes no mention of severance if he voluntarily resigns without the council first asking him to tender his resignation. 

During Friday's meeting Graf made a motion amending the severance package to three months, which is what Farwell's contract states.

Ward 1 Councilwoman Maggie Klaes voiced support for the six-month severance given the "undue stress" Farwell has been under since he started in 2010.

Farwell told council members he signed a contract that would afford him three months of severance pay if he resigned at the council's request.

"There's been some alluding to the city administrator's contract, that he went out with six months. That's what his contract said. That's what he signed up for," Farwell said. "So, I don't know. You're going to have to decide, but that's what I signed."

The motion to amend the severance to three months failed 4-2 due in part to Hermann voting 'no' when she meant to vote 'yes.'

"I voted wrong," she said after the votes had been tallied while offering an apology. "I should have said 'yes' to change it." 

Although an amendment to the amendment could have been offered so Hermann could vote as she intended, Graf declined, leaving the three-month severance package behind. Graf clarified she did not join At-large Councilman John Rowland and Ward 2 Councilwoman Julie Allesee in voting in favor of the three-month deal because a tie would have sent the motion to the next meeting, and the next council.

Farwell's severance package will come from the city attorney budget, which has money remaining from the $250,000 that it was bolstered with for the legal malpractice trial the city lost in October. 

Following the meeting, Mayor Mark Vulich told the Herald he doesn't know if he will veto the resolution, sign it and put it into effect or let it go into effect without his signature.

"I have 14 days to decide what I'm going to do," he said.

ARTICLE: Farwell created wording for resignation request

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