6/21/11 Pork Charade ‘Untouchables’ whitewash retaliatory firing

Pork of Shelton Commissioner/Chair Jay Hupp appears gob smacked after inviting public comment only to be met with stony silence following Pork Executive Director John Dobson’s retaliatory firing of the courageous exemplary staffer, Teresa Rebo who had filed a whistle blower complaint about alleged favoritism, cronyism, and misappropriation of public assets for his pals, the Hansens, in their bid to lease Pork Property, i.e. the fairgrounds, to the company owned by the Hansens. Mr. Dobson admitted in one Pork meeting he intended to assist the Hansens in creating a business (presumably profit based). Ms. Rebo complained the terms offered the Hansens were effectively a ‘gift’ of public assets.

Mr. Hansen is seen (in this clip) attempting to defang the allegation his wife verbally abused Ms. Teresa Rebo during a phone call to the Pork, using obscenities when asked who was calling by responding “I think you know who this is you low life piece of s***!”

Pork Commissioners were asked if they were aware of this verbal abuse and telephone harassment prior to Ms. Rebo’s firing. No response from the ‘Untouchables’ was offered. They later demurred it was all under Mr. Dobson’s purview and had nothing to do with them…ignoring the legal fact the Pork is liable for Mr. Dobson’s actions/misconduct–as though it were Czar Dobson’s private enterprise/personal fiefdom.

Skip Hauser (Pork attorney) must realize by now he hit the jackpot when he signed on with the Pork–a virtual goldmine given its support for the Skip Hauser Full Employment Act.

6-21-11 Pork of Shelton Charade ‘Untouchables’ whitewash retaliatory firing.

WA State Senator Kiline promotes pending Whistle Blower bill

Qui Tam (Whistle Blower) overview/synopsis

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4 Responses to 6/21/11 Pork Charade ‘Untouchables’ whitewash retaliatory firing

  1. admin says:

    POSTED per Mr. Jack Miles request:

    Just like any other meeting. I asked the commissioners if they believe Mr. Dobson was justified in sending harassing email, forcing Ms. Rebo to sign the “Last Chance Agreement and Disciplinary Action Plan” and then firing her? Their response was “absolutely”. Unbelieveable!…the mentality of these 2 commissioners. I also found Mr. Dobson used Suzanne Michael, the outside counsel, the same attorney that HIRED the INVESTIGATOR to address/whitewash Teresa Rebo’s concerns. The same Suzanne Michael drafted the “Last Chance Agreement and Disciplinary Action Plan” Mr. Dobson forced Ms. Rebo to sign. On Monday at 8:21 am, Mr. Dobson sent Ms. Rebo a message to her personal email account, well knowing Ms. Rebo was at work and does not access her personal email account from work. The email contained “You have until 10 am to sign the Last Chance Agreement and Disciplinary Action Plan” (or words to that effect), “or you will be terminated.” In the letter he gave to Ms. Rebo when he fired her (which Ms. Rebo provided me as she was escorted out the door) it states:

    “You have failed to sign the ‘Last Chance Agreement’ given to you last week. You have been advised that failure to sign it by 10 am today (Monday June 20, 2011) would mean you have resigned your employment and the final paperwork would be executed.”

    “It is now after 10 am and you have not provided me a signed copy. This is yet another example of your failing to follow my directives. Your continued insubordination, and your rude, demeaning and insulting conduct and communications toward co-workers, vendors and tenants, led me to prepare the ‘Last Chance Agreement’. I hoped you would understand the magnitude of your conduct when you received it, but it is clear from your actions and lack of action, that you do not and that your behaviors will not change.”

    “I am terminating your employment with the Port, effective today, June 20, 2011. You will receive compensation through the end of today. Please immediately return to me all Port property that you have in your possession, including but not limited to any documents or copies that you have taken from the Port.”

    “Because of your failure to sign the ‘Last Chance Agreement’ as well as your ongoing and consistent failure by you to meet the standards of employment with the Port of Shelton which includes but not limited to insubordination, being rude, demeaning and insulting to me, I am terminating your employment with the Port of Shelton on this date June 20, 2011.”

    Never did he (Dobson) tell her this document needed to be signed by 10 am June 20, 2011…demonstrating how Mr. Dobson operates. These e-mails and the ‘Last Chance Agreement and Disciplinary Action Plan’ were designed to try and establish some kind of pretext critical of Ms. Rebo’s conduct at the Port. Face it folks, Mr. Dobson knew he had no documentation to support his claims Teresa was insubordinate–no documentation to show he carried out his duties and responsibilities as a supervisor at the Port of Shelton. Three weeks ago Mr. Dobson took Ms. Rebo’s computer from her office and when it was returned, FILES WERE MISSING. After consulting with a friend who has a background in Human Resources, I asked him, “What would be typical to have in a personnel file?” After my discussion with him, I prepared this list of materials: A copy of Ms. Rebo’s personnel file (which I was given written permission from Ms. Rebo to obtain), A signed copy of the ‘Last Chance Agreement’ signed by Dobson and Wendy Smith as witnesses, A copy of the Job Description of the Property Development Manager, A copy of notes from Dobson relating to his initial counsel of Ms. Rebo when hired and what his expectations of her were in her duties and responsibilities as the Property Development Manager, A copy of notes from Dobson of her 6-month employee performance evaluation, her 1-year employee evaluation, A written response as to why Ms. Rebo was given a raise, A copy of any and all notes, emails and/or letters advising Ms. Rebo of poor performance, A copy of the Executive Director’s Employee Evaluation Program and Performance Evaluation written policy Guide Book.

    Upon inspection of Teresa Rebo’s Personnel File on Tuesday, NONE of that information was present in her file.

    RCW 42.41, as it is outlined in that chapter states “The purpose of this chapter is to protect local government employees who make good-faith reports to appropriate governmental bodies and to provide remedies for individuals who are subject to retaliation for having made such reports“.

    Mr. Dobson has never established a policy for staff on the procedures to follow for reporting such information, nor provided information to employees on proper procedure should they believe misconduct occurred as defined in the RCW. Paragraph (3) in RCW 42.41.020 defines “Retaliatory Action”. I invite all to read the chapter.

    Some examples: Frequent and undesirable office changes, unwarranted and unsubstaniated letters of reprimand or unsatifactory performance evaluations, disciplinary action or dismissal, ect…

    RCW 42.41.045 (“Prohibition on intimidation of whistle blower“) says, “A local goverment official or employee may not use his or her official authority or influence, directly or indirectly, to threaten, intimidate, or coerce an employee for the purpose of interfering with that employee’s right to diclose information concerning an improper governmental action.

    Bottom line: The commissioners have now put the Port in Legal Jeopardy yet again. Currently, the Port is facing litigation for other actions by Mr. Dobson (referenced when I spoke in the Port’s June 1, 2010 meeting) including firing (2) employees at the Port and calling it a “Re-organization at the Port”–resulting in a claim for ~$700,000 damages…damages that must be paid for with taxpayer money if a judgment against the Port is entered.

    After sounding the ALARM for many months regarding Mr. Dobson’s failure to exercise acceptable judgment in the use of taxpayer money, it’s time to renew calls for his resignation/termination. Residents should demand Mr. Dobson be terminated and refuse to take no for an answer. Any decision to protect/rescue Mr. Dobson yet again may be very costly to you, the taxpayers. Mr. Dobson must go!

    Thank you,

    Jack Miles

  2. admin says:

    The Pork meeting video clip begins with the traditional swearing an oath of allegiance to the flag. But the best measure of one’s patriotism is seen in abiding by this nation’s laws and the principles for which it was born of the blood of our founding fathers and their ideals, not the worshiping of a piece of cloth! The hypocrisy is palpable in that the Pork of Shelton ignores not only our laws (e.g. whistle blower protection statutes) but the will of the people themselves–the very core of democratic principles which gave birth to this great nation.

    On the eve of our celebration of this nation’s independence and liberty, be it remembered the signers of our Declaration of Independence pledged “their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor”. Most did, in fact, lose their fortunes if not their lives, but never their sacred honor. It is an extreme embarrassment the current Pork Commissioners have perverted these ideals and laws intended to protect citizens for their own ends, greed, and indolence.

  3. admin says:

    One reader asks:

    I have a question; Clearly, two of the three “Pork” Commissioners violated the public meetings act by approving a censure letter without having a meeting. Assuming that is correct, can any citizen file suit against them, and if the citizen wins, is that grounds for misfeasance and/or malfeasance that would qualify a recall?

    • admin says:

      Thanks for asking. Wikipedia has a fairly good overview of the history of the federal ‘whistle blower’ statute allowing ordinary citizens ‘standing’ to sue a miscreant so long as they properly (according to statute) notify the government (and in some instances are required NOT to notify the miscreant!) and abide by the time provisions as well as a number of other convoluted mandates: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_Claims_Act

      Another site tracks the ongoing struggle in Washington to pass a State version of ‘qui tam’:

      State Senator Kline has released the following video arguing in favor of such a pending bill:

      Dan Hargrove, esq. blog discussing qui tam remedies for fraud against the government and taxpayers:

      There may well be grounds for such a ‘qui tam’ suit against the Pork of Shelton and the Pork Commissioners/officers for fraud against the taxpayer. The allegations listed in such a suit would have to satisfy the language in the qui tam statute (federal/state).

      Teresa Rebo likely has such grounds based on the Pork’s illegal retaliatory firing of her for bringing to light the Pork’s misconduct, or what she believed in good faith was misconduct.

      The shorter (although deceptively simpler) answer to your question is:
      YES…if a Qui Tam action against a Pork Commissioner was successful (prevailed), then a recall petition likely would be justified. But by the time such a Qui Tam action was adjudicated, the existing Pork Commissioners would have (if they chose to run again) already stood for re-election. In the end, in such a scenario, the hammer is in the hands of the voters, though it would seem glacially slow. On the other hand, the law should not lightly discount the will of the people which has already been expressed in the LAST election!

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