MINOCQUA (WAOW) – The police chief in Minocqua has resigned, just two weeks after the town board agreed to pay a veteran police department worker $120,000 to settle a discrimination complaint.
Chief Andrew Gee worked out severance deal worth $43,500, representing six months pay and benefits, and resigned during a special meeting Wednesday, the town board said in a statement Thursday.
“Chief Gee stated that personal reasons prompted his decision to resign,” the statement said.
Gee was named the police chief in August 2007.
Julie Mager, who worked as an administrative assistant in the police department since 2005, resigned in early October to settle a dispute with the town that started with a disagreement between her and Gee over about 30 minutes of overtime pay.
The chief accused Mager of trying to “cheat” the town and he reduced the overtime request, suspended her, placed her on administrative leave with pay and began the process of firing her, according to town records.
Mager filed a discrimination complaint with the state Department of Workforce Development Equal Rights Division, alleging she was discriminated against for standing up for “her wage and hour rights,” the records said.
The town board made no mention of that dispute in reaching the severance agreement with Gee.
“The town board concluded that the agreement was in the best interests of the town, the police department and taxpayers,” the statement said.
The severance deal includes a letter of recommendation from Town Board Chairman Mark Hartzheim, calling Gee a “straightforward and trustworthy individual” who took “the initiative to find immediate solutions to challenges.”
Lt. Dave Jaeger, who has worked for the police department for five years, was named interim police chief, Clerk Roben Haggart said.