What Ashland Citizens Need to Know about Certain City Staff – Astonishing Videos or Behind the Scenes of the Senior Center Law Suit

PRESS RELEASE: The Ashland Chronicle received this press release on 8/30.
It’s not often that the public has the opportunity to look behind the scenes of Ashland, Oregon’s city government. Accessing public records is time consuming and expensive. Also, when can one hear those in City government answering questions under oath?

A 2019 lawsuit against the City has provided public records and sworn testimonies that give us a peek into how government works in Ashland. The City of Ashland agreed to a $538,000 out-of-court settlement in a civil lawsuit for whistleblowing, wrongful termination, and defamation of the former Senior Program Manager. (Also, in 2019 a jury unanimously awarded another claimant over $625,000 for whistleblowing.)

A new video commentary “Foul Play? Behind the scenes in Ashland’s City government” (on AshlandSOS.com) looks at the public documents and sworn testimonies from that lawsuit to gain greater understanding of: 1) Ashland’s changes to its Senior Program, and 2) the possible reasons Ashland agreed to one of the highest awards given to a public employee in such circumstances. 
We ask the following questions … you decide.

A. What happened to Ashland’s Senior Program?
1. Was the whole, accurate truth given during testimonies under oath?
2. Why was the City Attorney heavily involved in regular management activities?
3. Were public meeting laws or the spirit of the laws followed?
4. Did the City violate its obligations under an employment agreement?
5. Did the City try to buy or coerce employees to give up right to overtime pay?6. Was Commissioner Gardiner involved in personnel decisions outside his authority?
7. Did the City attempt to enforce what could be considered discriminatory volunteer background checks, and did not respect employee who raised liability exposure concerns?
8. Was the Senior Program Manager’s reputation defamed?
9. Was the BOLI (Bureau of Labor and Industries) process abused?
10. Were State Election Laws violated?
We present the documentation and you decide. Can Ashland do better?
This non-commercial commentary has been made by Ashland, Oregon citizens whose sole interest is in upstanding and transparent government. Every effort has been made to present content which serves that public purpose.

The video can be found at AshlandSOS.com where it is broken up into approximately five-minute segments for easy viewing. 

Here is the link to YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLsz_TlLeqbeuajNIS0-H7VLDOq9AG4YC2

//inserted by Sharon