Pierce Co. paying out another $850K to settle employee claims

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by LINDA BRILL / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on March 27, 2012 at 5:03 PM

Updated Tuesday, Mar 27 at 5:16 PM

TACOMA, Wash. -- Pierce County will pay $850,000 to settle claims against the county's assessor-treasurer, according to documents made public Tuesday.

The new settlements reached with three current and former employees bring to five the total number reached by the county on behalf of Dale Washam, with the total cost to taxpayers topping $1 million.

The new settlements involve complaints that Washam and his deputy engaged in retaliation and other misconduct toward the plaintiffs. The settlements were finalized with each plaintiff at different times over the past six weeks.

The Pierce County Council last week asked Washam to step down, a request he declined.

The three new settlements are:

  • $300,000 for James Hall, $100,000 of which will go to attorney fees.
  • $400,000 for Sally Barnes, $133,320 of which will go to attorney fees.
  • $150,000 for Cynthia O'Neill, $50,000 of which will go to attorney fees.

No outstanding claims against Washam remain, according to The News Tribune of Tacoma.

An ethics complaint against Washam has been filed before the Pierce County Ethics Commission.

A 2011 recall effort to remove Washam from office failed.



 

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