Arroyo Grande offering Adams severance pay
January 23, 2015
In response to a threat made by ousted city manager Steve Adams, the Arroyo Grande City Council has opted to offer a settlement to its former top bureaucrat.
Adams is currently threatening to sue Arroyo Grande if the city does not give him six months severance pay with benefits. The package he is requesting totals $107,000.
On Thursday evening, the council met in closed session for a special meeting on the lawsuit threat posed by Adams. During closed session, the council chose to task interim manager Bob McFall with negotiating a settlement with the former city manager.
The council opted not to let City Attorney Tim Carmel do the negotiating. Several member of the public spoke out against Carmel at Thursday’s meeting prior to the closed session hearing.
During an investigation last summer into a sex scandal involving Adams and Community Development Director Teresa McClish, Carmel absolved Adams of wrongdoing. However, Councilman Tim Brown later stated that Carmel had informed him of a prior inappropriate incident involving Adams and McClish, a subordinate employee.
Adams announced his resignation on Oct. 1. In his letter of resignation, he stated that his departure from the city would take effect when his replacement started work.
McFall began his job as interim city manager on Jan. 14. But, Adams claims that when he was placed on paid administrative leave in November he was fired, even though he continued to receive pay and benefits until McFall was hired
Adams’s contract allowed him a severance package if the council fired him without cause, but not if he chose to resign.
Both Adams and McFall previously worked for the city of Glendale. Adams worked in a subordinate role to McFall there, and the city of Arroyo Grande has cleared McFall of having any conflict of interest in dealing with Adams.