Ron Collier, former chief financial officer for the Bibb County school system, wasnt told about his new job responsibilities until Friday, three weeks after the board voted to remove him from his CFO post.
Thats the claim of Colliers attorney, Jerry Lumley, who said its more proof that Collier is being mistreated. Collier is suing the school system, saying hes suffered adverse employment action after questioning whether a $1 million check Superintendent Romain Dallemand sought would have been legal to write.
Lumley said Collier received a copy of his new job description late Friday afternoon, minutes before The Telegraph received a copy under a Georgia Open Records Act request. The job description, for the post of capital assets and contract manager, indicates the job wasnt created until December.
A personnel action form shows Collier was transferred to a post as capital assets and contract director, not manager.
Collier was transferred into the new position Dec. 20, days after the school system wrapped up an investigation into his department. This summer, Collier protested Dallemands demands to pay $1 million to a nonprofit, the Central Georgia Partnership for Individual and Community Development, to support a grant. The Telegraph reported Sunday that the money was to be used to build the Macon Promise Center, part of the Macon Promise Neighborhood program. The centers lease wasnt signed until after Dallemand told Collier to write the check, which happened weeks after the invoice was sent. Instructions for the federal grant say no money needed to be spent until the grant was received. The grant was denied.
Documents provided to The Telegraph also show Colliers salary is to remain unchanged at $130,000 per year, with a change from deputy superintendent to director.
Records filed with the state auditors office show that last year, the highest-paid person in the Bibb County school system with a title of director, Title I Director Lori Ward-Rogers, was paid less than $116,100. That puts Colliers pay about 12 percent higher than the pay of the next highest-paid director, a difference of more than $13,000.
The school system did not respond to a request for comment Monday after the Telegraph asked multiple questions, including a request for information on current pay for all director-level employees. Previously the school system said officials wouldnt comment about Collier and Macon Promise Neighborhood because of the lawsuit.
In an e-mail Friday, school system attorney Randy Howard said there are no e-mails or letters that could be released from the investigation. Colliers lawsuit includes a letter telling him he was under investigation.
Howard also wrote Friday in an e-mailed response to The Telegraphs Open Records Request, At the present time, there is no summary or report in existence relating to the investigation of Mr. Collier or his department. In addition, I have no personal knowledge of any notes relating to the investigation.
Lumley said he interprets that to mean there is no evidence of wrongdoing by Mr. Collier or his department. Not only no evidence of wrongdoing, but I think its evidence that everything he was doing is appropriate.
To contact writer Mike Stucka, call 744-4251.