Gwinnett’s new fire chief, George W. “Bill” Myers,” will start at an annual salary of $135,000 under an employment contract that takes effect Saturday. His pay range, though, extends upward to $177,914. Also, he’s eligible for a take-home car or a car allowance of $4,160 a year.
A federal jury ruled today that race played a role in 2004 when College Park fired a white department head. The jury awarded Christopher Jones, the city’s former director of economic development, $75,000 each in punitive damages from Councilmen Charles E. Phillips Sr. and Tracey Wyatt, plus attorney’s fees. The award is less than a proposed $740,000 settlement. But the city’s legal fees could add $1 million or more to its tab.
Two years ago, Davetta Johnson Mitchell was accused of stealing $40,000 of public money six to nine years ago. When she will go to trial – if ever – is anybody’s guess. Last week marked the second anniversary of her indictment for writing allegedly unauthorized checks to herself when she ran the Atlanta-Fulton County Recreation Authority. It took years to seek criminal charges, prosecutors say, because the authority’s records under Mitchell were a shambles. “They were not organized in any way,” assistant district attorney Kellie Hill said. “They were simply boxes of paper.”
(UPDATE: Jurors got the case Thursday and deliberated for three hours or so. They’ll resume at 9:30 a.m. Friday.)
More than a year ago, the city of College Park rejected settling a fired employee’s reverse-discrimination lawsuit for $740,000. Now the city is in federal court, where a jury’s pending decision will determine whether that was a good call. Christopher Jones, the city’s former director of economic development, sued in 2005 after a three-member majority of the City Council voted to let him go.
Former Grady Memorial Hospital CEO Otis Story has settled a lawsuit over his 2008 firing. Story will receive “less than a year’s pay,” as well as a bonus and moving expenses that were included in his employment contract but never paid, Grady general counsel Timothy Jefferson said. No total was disclosed, but “it won’t be an earth-shattering amount,” Jefferson said.