Former Hillsboro Safety and Service Director Todd Wilkin is no longer on the city payroll as of Wednesday evening.
In an email time stamped 6:58 p.m. Wednesday and sent to city officials including all city council members as well as Mayor Drew Hastings and city Auditor Gary Lewis, Beery wrote that payments to Wilkin should end “effective immediately.”
In the brief email, Beery wrote, “Effective immediately, all pay and benefits to Todd Wilkin should cease. This determination is based upon consultation with and advice from special counsel for the city. Please call me with any questions.” Also copied was special counsel Drew Piersall, who is representing the city in the Wilkin matter.
Both Beery and council President Lee Koogler declined Friday to elaborate on the decision, other than Koogler acknowledging that he was aware of the email from Beery.
The email came on the heels of a special council meeting held at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday requested by Hastings, who has been critical of the decision by Beery to continue paying Wilkin after the mayor dismissed the safety director from his job on Nov. 22. Council adjourned from Wednesday’s closed session and took no public action.
Hastings said Friday he was happy with Beery’s email.
“I felt all along that he should not be paid,” said Hastings. “It should not have had to go to a special counsel to resolve it. It should have remained an administrative decision from the start. But I’m glad we ultimately reached that conclusion.”
Wilkin was dismissed from his job about two weeks after the end of a trial that saw Hastings charged with four felonies. Two of the charges were thrown out by the judge during the trial, and a jury acquitted Hastings of the remaining two charges.
Wilkin was a key witness in the trial, and since his firing his attorneys have notified the city that Wilkin is appealing his dismissal, claiming that Wilkin was a whistleblower and Hastings’ actions were retaliatory. Hastings has denied that the firing was in retaliation for Wilkin’s involvement in the investigation or his testimony at trial.
Wilkin, who was hired in 2013 at a salary of $74,000, has been paid nearly $9,000 so far since his dismissal, according to the latest payroll records requested by The Times-Gazette, a request made while another payroll period was already in progress.
Reach Gary Abernathy at 937-393-3456 or by email at email@example.com.