CITY SHELLS OUT $30K in settlements

Wausau officials have now settled a pair of grievances with its city attorney and former HR director related to an incident between former alderman Keene Winters and city transit director Greg Seubert last year.

The city will pay $30,837 to the two: $7,587 to City Attorney Anne Jacobson and $23,285 to HR Director Myla Hite. As part of the agreement, Hite volunteered to resign from her post, effective Friday. In return, the city agrees to only furnish employment dates and job title for any future employment reference checks.

Jacobson says her settlement will cover only her legal costs related to the grievance and does not include any other damages.

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Wausau City Attorney Anne Jacobson

The city, under the agreement with Jacobson, will expunge a reprimand given by Mayor Tipple, and an unflattering 2015 performance review. The city will replace that review with one containing all “satisfactory” scores, effectively ensuring Jacobson gets a 1.5% raise next year.

The discussion July 26 was held in closed session, after which Mayor Robert Mielke released a statement saying that it was time for the city to move forward from the incident. The grievances arose from a disagreement between Winters and Seubert about Winters’ proposed transit solution. Seubert wanted to delay the implementation because there wouldn’t be enough time to make the project a success. Winters stormed into Seubert’s office, according to reports, called Seubert a “lazy piece of shit” and threatened to have Seubert fired.

Then-Mayor James Tipple hired outside legal counsel after ignoring Jacobson’s concerns that the city was exposing itself to liability in how it was investigating the Winters situation. Hite’s handling of the investigation was also scrutinized by outside legal counsel.

Mielke said he had complete confidence in Jacobson and that the reprimand by Tipple was without merit. He thanked Hite for her service to the city, and wished her future success.