New report shows former public works director violated city policies
WAUSAU (WAOW) -- A newly released report says Wausau's former public works director violated numerous city policies. Brad Marquardt resigned last month after an investigation was launched questioning his actions as a city official.
This 94-page report was put together by Wausau attorney Dean Dietrich. It presented several allegations against Marquardt. It's purpose was to prepare the city council for upcoming hearings regarding Marquardt's performance.
In the report, Dietrich claims Marquardt neglected to follow state statutes, took part in official misconduct in office, and failed to follow contract bidding requirements. One instance of that the report shows is the Highway 52 median project.
Emails show Marquardt told the designer of that project to keep his invoice below $25,000. He said, if it was higher the city would be required to seek bids.
Other allegations say Marquardt skipped bidding for another redevelopment project and caused the city to pay too much for road projects in Wausau.
Newsline 9 brought the documents to Wausau city leaders.
"If he's accused of doing all of these things, how did they go unnoticed for so long?” Newsline 9 reporter Emily Neubauer asked Wausau Mayor Jim Tipple.
“There's many moving pieces at the city, each department head, each supervisor, each employee, has a list of things they need to do. When the council asked a few questions, and again everyone assumes everyone is doing their job,” answered Mayor Tipple.
The mayor appointed Marquardt to his position as Public Works director.
“Do you feel that Brad made mistakes or any wrong doings during his time in office?” Newsline 9 asked.
“I think the report speaks for itself, to comment additionally on that would be, would not add anything to this interview," said Mayor Tipple.
Marquardt did not return our request for comment. In a memo to the city, he fought the allegations against him. He said he always tried to act in the best interest of the city saying, "I did not hide any facts, details, circumstances relating to the Highway 52 Parkway Median Bird Project from anyone at any time."
Ultimately, Marquardt resigned after an agreement was reached with the City of Wausau. It says Marquardt will be paid $50,000 and receive health benefits until the end of the year.
“It's a very typical agreement that two parties agreed, the city and the employee, it's typically not any more, not any less,” said Mayor Tipple.
Now the mayor wants to move on.
"People make mistakes, I make mistakes, and hopefully we learn from our mistakes,” said Mayor Tipple.
Marquardt's position won't be filled immediately. Wausau City Council members said they don't want the city to rush into any hires. They say they want to discuss who and how the position should be filled at upcoming meetings.