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Is BE’s Bailey under fire?

By Staff | Apr 17, 2010

For the second week in a row, the Blue Earth City Council closed their meeting to conduct the annual evaluation and review of City Administrator Kathy Bailey.

This time, though, things got heated. At last Monday’s meeting, loud, argumentative voices could be heard from the council chambers, despite the fact the door was closed.

Bailey was not present during the one hour and ten minute closed session, and instead was down the hall in the employee lounge.

When the meeting was once again opened to the public, Mayor Rob Hammond announced that the council had conducted a number of discussions on the evaluation and procedures, and was not able to come to an agreement.

Hammond said there would be two groups of City Council members who would meet later in the week to continue the evaluation. Those two sessions would also be closed, he added.

“Councilmen John Huisman, Les Wiborg and Dan Brod will be in one group, and councilmen Dick Maher, Rick Scholtes and Glenn Gaylord will be in the other,” he said. Hammond himself would not be a part of either group.

One group met on Tuesday, and the other was on Wednesday last week.

At the next regular meeting, on April 19, a committee composed of Huisman, Gaylord and Mayor Hammond will present the evaluation results to Bailey, Hammond said. That session will also be closed, the mayor said.

Bailey’s annual review has actually been listed on the past three council agendas.

The first time it was not addressed due to a lengthy meeting, and was postponed.

The second time, on April 5, the council closed the meeting for the evaluation for only minutes, before opening it again and announcing the review was once again to be postponed, this time until April 12. Bailey was present at this short meeting.

Hammond said at that time the council could not agree on the procedure for conducting the review.

The mayor also told the Register, after this past Monday’s meeting, that the council “had not reached a consensus” about Bailey’s evaluation after an hour.

“We would have been there until midnight if we didn’t do this,” he said, referring to the plan to have the two groups continue with their separate evaluations.

Hammond says that a report of the evaluation will be made public after the closed review session with Bailey on Monday night, in accordance with Minnesota state law.