February 25, 2016 

City News Service 

 

The 14-year political career of Carson City Clerk Jim Dear, a former mayor, appeared to be at an end this week after city voters decided to recall him over allegations that he harassed city employees and created a hostile work environment — charges he insisted were fabrications by political foes.

 

With all precincts reporting, voters approved the recall by a margin of 53.82 percent-46.18 percent, according to figures released by the City Clerk’s Office.

 

Councilwoman Donesia Gause, a former city clerk, ran unopposed in the race to succeed Dear if the recall was successful. Gause is a former city clerk who Dear beat in the March 2015 election. She was then appointed to a City Council seat that she must now vacate to get her old job back. Council members must still decide whether to appoint her replacement or call for a special election.

 

Dear spent 11 years as Carson's mayor and was elected city clerk last March, and quickly came under fire from other city officials, including the City Council, which censured him in October following a probe that concluded he threatened and harassed other city officials, primarily for his own political gain.

 

According to the report, several city staffers claimed Dear created such a hostile work environment that they feared his angry outbursts would escalate to violence, and some even concocted plans for escaping from their City Hall offices if such an attack materialized, the Daily Breeze reported.

 

Other opponents claimed that Dear would pressure staff to award city contracts and jobs to political allies. Some workers claimed Dear made racist comments, the newspaper reported.

 

The City Council voted in February to ask the District Attorney’s Office to investigate allegations that Dear ran for city clerk for the sole purpose of increasing his pension, which is based on annual salary. The part-time mayor’s job pays $22,735 a year while the clerk’s position pays about $130,000, allowing Dear to increase his annual retirement from $12,276 to $66,374, according to the Breeze.

 

In a ballot statement, Dear said he has worked tirelessly on behalf of the city for 14 years, a period he says has created a “powerful legacy of honest leadership.”

 

“... I hope that my record of service to our city has earned your support.”

Category: Community



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