Forum in Killen to discuss City Manager settlement

POSTED: Monday, April 25, 2011 - 4:21pm
UPDATED: Friday, April 13, 2012 - 9:54am

KILLEEN -- In Killeen, many in the community have been left scratching their heads, wondering why almost a $1 million in tax-payer's money is being used to pay the City Manager to leave. Monday, they get a chance to speak up and finally get some answers.

Former City Manager, Connie Green wasn't happy with the decision to pay him nearly $800,000 to leave. He says they pushed him out for voicing concerns with Councilwoman Jo Ann Purser and Councilman Larry Cole.

Councilman Ernest Wilkerson tells Fox 44 that Green brought to the Council's attention that they were leaking confidential information and interfering in city staff decisions which is the City Manager's job.

"I brought that with good intentions to the council, and as a result of it, i lost my job," said Green.

Councilman Larry Cole says when Green brought the issues to the table, relationships couldn't be repaired.

 "By attacking me and Mrs. Purser, and I believe some of the other council members supported us or at least thought it was unnecessary, he had just cleaned himself into a corner where he couldn't work with the council anymore," said Cole.

Green wanted to continue working as City Manager, but Councilman Wilkerson says it would've never worked.  That's why he voted to pay green the $750,000, fearing a lawsuit would cost even more tax dollars.

"He had claimed racial discrimination and also to protect ourselves from whistle blowing lawsuit that may have produced. So to protect ourselves from those things, that was the reason we did what we did," said Wilkerson.

Now, some council members are saying the decision to get rid of Green was made too fast and has made the public suspicious of why they paid him off. Mayor Timothy Hancock agrees.

He spoke out for the first time about the issue, saying the council now looks like they were trying to cover something up.

"You cannot make good decisions when you are emotional about something, you're angry about something or you're discussing something that's totally different than what the issues are in front of you. I think our council rushed into a judgment," said Mayor Hancock.

Council members deny any wrong-doing and say now is the time to rebuild the city's trust.


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