The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


December 21, 2013

Council members: Farwell created wording for resignation request

CLINTON — Clinton City Council members have confirmed that City Attorney Jeff Farwell provided one council member with a letter detailing how she could ask for his resignation and how much his payout could be the night the request was made. 

At-large Councilman John Rowland supplied the Clinton Herald on Friday with a copy of a letter At-large Councilwoman Jennifer Graf received from Farwell the night the council met Dec. 10, when she made a motion for Farwell to resign. 

The letter has no heading or signature and Farwell was not available to confirm he wrote it, but Graf confirmed Farwell gave it to her before the Committee of the Whole meeting and his performance evaluation review started. 

It wasn't the letter that sparked her to ask for Farwell's resignation that night, Graf told the Herald, but it did provide her guidance how to proceed.

"I made the motion based on a conversation I had with Jeff," Graf said. "He provided me with the framework to make the motion that would cover the point and purpose and option available to let him leave the position." 

The City Attorney evaluation that night was supposed to be led by human resource consultant Paul Greufe, who did not show up for the meeting. Greufe's absence led to Graf making the motions for Farwell's resignation and severance, she said. 

Before the meeting, Farwell had seen his reviews the council completed. He earned an average rating, with council member remarks ranging from touting Farwell's performance to disparaging him. 

Although he could have requested the review take place in closed session, Farwell asked it remain open, which is what the letter indicates he would do. 

In the letter, "a council person" is informed, he or she "could" make a motion asking for Farwell's resignation.

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