Hanford · Highlight

Lemoore votes to settle lawsuit with Council member Blair

The City of Lemoore has approved a settlement with Councilmember Holly Andrade Blair on Thursday related to negative comments Blair made online directed at the city’s police department, its police chief, and the city manager.

In late January, the City launched a suit against Blair seeking a writ of mandate seeking to quiet her attacks on city staff. Blair responded with an anti-SLAPP motion.

Terms of the settlement require Blair to refrain from making disparaging public statements directed at City employees and volunteers instead directing comments on those positions through the traditional chain of command via the City Manager.

In turn, the City will be removing restrictions placed on Blair from its August 2018 censure of her comments and covering legal fees up to $38,000 within a year.

Lemoore Police Chief Darrell Smith issued a statement following approval of the agreement, citing a number of positives – including the requirement that Blair use conventional administrative channels to lodge complaints over personnel.

“While the Compromise… is far from perfect in this very imperfect world, it does and

The City of Lemoore has approved a settlement with Councilmember Holly Andrade Blair on Thursday related to negative comments Blair made online directed at the city’s police department, its police chief, and the city manager.

City Council member Chad Billingsley cast the sole no vote on the settlement. It now returns to Kings County Superior Court Judge Kathy Ciuffini to be finalized.

In late January, the City launched a suit against Blair seeking a writ of mandate seeking to quiet her attacks on city staff. Blair responded with an anti-SLAPP motion.

Terms of the settlement require Blair to refrain from making disparaging public statements directed at City employees and volunteers instead directing comments on those positions through the traditional chain of command via the City Manager.

In turn, the City will be removing restrictions placed on Blair from its August 2018 censure of her comments and covering legal fees up to $38,000 within a year.

Lemoore Police Chief Darrell Smith issued a statement following approval of the agreement, citing a number of positives – including the requirement that Blair use conventional administrative channels to lodge complaints over personnel.

“While the Compromise… is far from perfect in this very imperfect world,” Smith said in a release. “[I]t does, and I remain hopeful that it will continue, to force professionalism and compliance with the City’s administrative processes onto the elected official, who has shown that she would not otherwise feel so restrained.”

Read the City-Blair Settlement Agreement

BLAIR-SETTLEMENT

Click to download

Alex Tavlian
Alex Tavlian is the Executive Editor of The San Joaquin Valley Sun and Executive Director of Valley Future Foundation. You can reach Alex at alex.tavlian@sjvsun.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.