Truth not to be told

If our city attorney was fired then why was this in the latest version of the separation agreement that we have been able to see:

In further consideration for the promises made herein, all Released Entities and Persons and the City Manager

and his executive staff, agree that they will not in any way disparage, defame, or make any other comments or statements to

third parties that may be considered to be derogatory or detrimental to Firth’s reputation.

Does the city now have to lie if a potential future employer inquires about her performance?

We deserve better


10 Responses to Truth not to be told

  1. ripper1951 says:

    Pretty standard statement in an employment contract, Covers severances, lay offs, retirements, etc. Basically it means they’ll give her a good reference and she won’t unleash her Pearl Harbor file.


  2. Brutus, by law, employers generally are not allowed to say much of anything about a past employee’s job performance as it is.


    • JerryK says:

      That is probably correct if you’re still the employer. As I was leaving the BTOP project and it was winding down, I wrote letters of recommendation for my direct reporting staff, who were great. Once in a while I get a call from a potential employer about them and I give them a good recommendation and wish them well.

      Arrest me.


    • Anonymous says:

      Actually there is no law that prohibits discussing employee performance but if you say something negative that costs the employee a new job they are more motivated to sue the former employer, particularly if there is no hard evidence that the negative comments were true—in a lot of cases performance is a he said, she said thing. So most employers have policies that only dates of employment will be given to eliminate that risk.


  3. Anonymous says:

    Lie, deny, deceive is what politicians, Public Officials in El Taxo do best. THEY don’t handle the “Truth, Transparency” very well, if at all. WE didn’t ELECT this City “Manager”, how does HE have any authority to blow-off OUR money, make “PAY-OFFS” to Public Officials? When HE, THEY lie about what happened, what do we expect? WHERE is the El Taxo MAYOR?? Inherent Public Corruption, just like EPISD, a society of corruption..


  4. Helen Marshall says:

    John G Dungan is right…an experience of a friend – when an unsatisfactory employee resigned the day before he was to be fired after the requisite period of performance record keeping, university personnel staff advised that the most that could be said was effectively that he had been employed and had resigned.


  5. Anonymous says:

    The reason you see an agreement like this management incompetence. Our city leadership makes snap decisions to get rid of marginally performing employees instead of papering files or opting not to renew employment contracts. In this case, they decided they needed a different option in the middle of an annual employment contract and are giving a severance package to avoid an age discrimination lawsuit. The story here isn’t what dirt she has on our leadership, it is the fact that this is another in a long line of department heads who gets retired or resigned with a big payday. The questions we should be asking is why are we allowing employees to accumulate large amounts of sick leave (most private employers have use or lose it clauses), how is comp time monitored (leaving with that much vacation time raises questions in that area) and does the employee review process accurately assess competence? We also should be looking harder at vesting periods for retirement benefits. 10 years is too short. In this case, she had 20 years, but we have a shadow workforce of folks with 10 years who are getting pretty decent retirement benefits while they work somewhere else. Joyce Wilson is a good example of that.


    • Brutus says:

      Sick time should be taken when the employee is sick. Somehow it has become an entitlement that can be used whether the employee is sick or not.


    • enough already says:

      and the highly paid deputy who Wilson hired and who did not have to work the last several months of her contract because Wilson got pissed off and sent her home. she sat at home for months drawing full pay and benefits while remaining on the payroll long enough to qualify for her pension.


      • Helen Marshall says:

        Jane Shang…on leave for nearly a year…and Wilson refused to explain, on the grounds that it was a “personnel matter.” If the city manager sent EVERYONE home on paid leave, would we agree that was a “personnel matter?”


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