Water Board Approves Contract

Oskaloosa Municipal Water Board - 6-6-2014

Oskaloosa Municipal Water Board – 6-6-2014

Oskaloosa, Iowa – The Oskaloosa Municipal Water Board of Trustees voted Thursday to grant Oskaloosa Water Department General Manager Chad Coon a 5 year contract.

Coon, who has been Manager since 2007, is paid $81,000 per year.

Chairperson Pete Settimi worked with the board’s council and Coon’s council to work out the details of the contract, which is based upon the City of Oskaloosa’s City Manager’s contract.

“It is fairly typical in Chad’s position that we do have one of those [contract],” said Settimi. “We worked off of Chad’s council and the Water Board’s council… to come up with a reasonable employment contract.”

Settimi said that several different contracts were looked at in developing Coon’s current contract. On Thursday, June 5th, both parties came to an agreement.

Board member Joe Ryan asked if provisions for termination were in the contract. This was a concern he had raised at the previous meeting. “I know one of the concerns I had with the previous draft was there was no reference to any performance standards that Chad needs to live up to that would be a cause for termination.”

Water Board council highlighted the changes made to the contract that allowed the board and Coon to terminate the contract.

The Board could terminate Coon’s contract if:

  • Conviction or a plea of guilty or no contest to a felony crime or aggravated misdemeanor, whether or not adjudication is withheld.
  • Neglect of duty, including the inability or unwillingness to property discharge the responsibilities of office as directed by the Board.
  • Material breach of this Agreement, or violation of any substantive OMWD policy, rule or regulation, which would subject any other OMWD employee to termination.

Coon has the option to voluntarily resign his position with Employer before expiration of the contract, but needs to give a 30 day notice.

For Coon, Employee may also terminate this Agreement for “good reason” by delivering written notice not later than thirty days prior to the effective date of termination. If any of the following conditions are met, the Water Board agrees to pay Coon nine months of aggregate salary and benefits.

Those “good reasons” are as follows:

  • Board rejection of proposed policy changes(s) brought forward by Employee in good faith, if the rejection of said policy change(s) significantly limits Employee’s ability to discharge his duties.
  • A substantial reduction imposed by the Board in the scope of Employee’s authority and duties.
  • Refusal by the Board to appoint staff members recommended by Employee.

The Board vote 3-0 in favor of the contract.

The Board also voted in favor of proceeding with legal action in the matter of removal of Board Member Errin Keltner.

“Initially, Errin was taking care of his legal expenses and it was a matter against Errin. We went through a process to get Errin back on the board. Really what we’re doing here is support, it’s an action to support Errin 100% and put all of the onus and all of the financial burden for this particular action that the city council’s taken against the board back on the Water Department or the Water Board,” said Settimi.

This motion was the allow the Board to “take care of any legal fees” that incurred previous to Friday’s meeting and in the future.

The Board voted 2-1 in favor of the motion. Settimi and Kelter voted yes, with Ryan voting no.

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