The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

November 12, 2012

UPDATE: Council requests city administrator's resignation

City Administrator’s contract stipulates 6-month severance

By Katie Dahlstrom
Herald Staff Writer

CLINTON — During a special meeting Monday to discuss City Administrator Jeff Horne’s performance, the Clinton City Council recommended him to resign.  

The discussion was held in executive closed session, which Horne requested during the meeting prior to the discussion. The Council approved moving into closed session on a 5-1 vote with Ward 4 Council member Paul Gassman voting “no” and At-Large Council member Jennifer Graf absent.  

Following the 17-minute closed session, City Attorney Jeff Farwell explained the City Council had three options.  They could retain Horne, terminate him, or recommend his resignation. The Council unanimously recommended Horne to resign. Horne did not tender his resignation during the meeting.

Horne’s contract stipulates if he resigns following the Council recommendation, he will receive six months aggregate salary and six months of family health insurance. The severance will not include any deferred compensation, retirement, car allowance, or IPERS payment.  

According to his contract, Horne would have received the same severance package if the Council had terminated him. He would not have received any severance if he voluntarily tendered his resignation without recommendation from the Council.

His contract also states the severance be paid in a lump sum. However, the City Council moved the severance be paid in installments twice a month.

The request for Horne to resign comes after nearly a month of his absence from City Hall, which he previously attributed to resolving “personal issues.”

Horne was hired by the city in October 2009 with a salary of $95,000. Horne worked as the city administrator for Mitchellville before accepting the position in Clinton.  

If he resigns, Horne will be Clinton’s third city administrator in six years. He came to the city following the resignation of Gary Boden, who also received a severance package. Boden served as the city administrator from 2006 to 2009 after the departure of Jeff Kooistra, who served from 2001 until 2006 when he resigned to take a similar position with the city of Waukee.   

If Horne submits his resignation, it will still need to be approved by the City Council.

Horne did not respond to requests for comment.