The Hamilton County Commissioners are seeking help from the Indiana State Police following claims made by a former employee.
A lawsuit filed by Susan Byer on Nov. 14 states that Byer, a deputy treasurer and bankruptcy lender clerk in the Hamilton County Treasurer’s office, was terminated March 27 for alleged insubordination, failure to comply with Hamilton County employee expectations and other reasons.
The lawsuit states Byer believes she was terminated as a result of her confronting the chief deputy treasurer, Kim Good, for violating an office policy saying Hamilton County Treasurer’s Office employees were not allowed to post late tax payments as “on time.”
Byer then informed the Hamilton County Human Resources Office that she wanted to file a formal grievance against Good and the elected county treasurer, Jennifer Templeton. From July 12, 2017, to Byer’s termination date on March 27, Byer received three disciplinary notice letters. One of the letters stated Byer was glaring and had negative body language toward Good. Another letter stated Byer looked at her cell phone, which is a violation of office policy. The lawsuit stated Byer believes she was terminated because she knew Hamilton County Treasurer’s Office employees were allegedly posting late tax payments as “on time” for their family members.
Byer is seeking damages in the amount of $700,000 from the defendants for each cause of action.
The commissioners asked the state police to independently investigate the claims, and it is unknown if the state police will take on the case.
“While the county does not believe there is a factual basis for these charges, we feel it is our duty to ask an impartial party to investigate the claims,” County Commissioner Mark Heirbrandt stated. “That’s why we have asked the Indiana State Police instead of the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office for help. We owe it to the taxpayers to investigate the claims and to assure them that their tax dollars are being managed properly.”