City officials said this week that reports of negotiations for $300,000 for harassment complainants at the Wellness Center are something they know nothing about.
A local newsletter has reported that a claim was made by a person who worked at the Wellness Center that they had been harassed and/or retaliated against within the workplace. Recently, the newsletter reported that Mayor Carlo DeMaria had offered $300,000 to settle the claim.
For City attorneys Colleen Mejia and Keith Slattery, the reporting has left them scratching their heads.
“There has been no charge filed that we are aware of to match any of the reporting in the (newsletter),” read a statement from the City. “The settlement discussions that are being reported are not known to us, and we have no knowledge of (them). Any and all claims reported to the City are immediately investigated and assessed, including disciplinary actions when warranted.”
The matter has been bantered around for some time in the newsletter, but sources outside City Hall said it was a personnel issue that had been resolved some time ago.
This week, several City Councilors have apparently contemplated putting the matter on the agenda for discussion.
However, Slattery and Mejia said they would not be able to discuss personnel with the Council either in executive session or regular session as it is a violation. They said if the matter does end up on the calendar, they would not be able to present.
Both said any settlement is taken seriously.
“Any settlement negotiations in any form are generally prompted by a claimant,” the statement said. “The City recognizes that anyone with a claim can file that charge at any time, and if settlements are reached in any instance, it is by full agreement by all parties.”