By Pete Smith
Money was part of the reason cited when the city council effectively fired Les Olds, the former executive director of the Carmel Redevelopment Commission.
In a 4-3 vote at the Aug. 5, 2013 city council meeting, the council refused to renew his contract, citing inconsistent recordkeeping.
But now the Carmel City Center Community Development Corp. has stepped into the gap to pay Olds for the time he worked beyond the scope of his original $60,000 2013 contract.
In a 2-1 vote, the 4CDC board approved a $34,450 payout to Olds for work he completed for the CRC prior to his Oct. 17, 2013 resignation.
The sole dissenting vote came from Board Secretary John Clair, an appointment to the board by the Carmel city council.
“Les did the work, and I think he ought to be paid,” Clair said at the Jan. 14 4CDC board meeting.
But Clair didn’t think the 4CDC should be the entity to make the reimbursement. Clair said he thought Olds should have an attorney write a letter to the city demanding payment and that the money could come from the city’s self-insurance fund to avoid the 4CDC setting a new precedent.
4CDC Board President Ron Carter said that Olds’ contract was in effect when the $34,450 in additional charges were incurred.
“I think what we are being asked to do is … pay a bill that is owed,” Carter said prior to approving the payment. “If it does go back through the council it will be another situation which was very ugly for the community.”
Board Vice President John Ragland also voted to reimburse Olds.
Olds resigned from city service without comment in the aftermath of the release of a 2012 State Board of Accounts Audit of the CRC that found multiple incidents of flawed bookkeeping at the commission during his time as its leader.