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updated: 5/14/2014 5:55 AM

Kane County animal control investigation to focus on employee

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The investigation into personnel matters at Kane County's animal control agency will shift focus onto an unnamed employee now that former interim director Robert Sauceda has resigned.

Kane County State's Attorney Joe McMahon confirmed the change of direction during an interview Tuesday that followed an hourlong closed-door meeting with the full Kane County Board.

The meeting was the second debriefing county board members received on the matter in less than a week. Sauceda resigned last Wednesday after county officials placed him on administrative leave earlier this month and launched an investigation into "personnel matters" in Sauceda's animal control department.

On Tuesday, McMahon said the unnamed employee still has a job with the county. He would not comment on whether the employee has been placed on paid leave during the investigation.

There have been five employees, all women, hired in animal control in the last six months. That's roughly the time frame covering Sauceda's ascension from billing manager to interim director. It's not clear if any of those new employees are involved in the investigation.

"We're reviewing the employment situation, and that's ongoing," McMahon said.

McMahon also confirmed there will be no severance package for Sauceda because he voluntarily left his position.

The upheaval in the department also led county board members to table a plan Tuesday that would've changed the name of the agency to "Kane County Animal Control and Care."

Sauceda requested the name change while he was still in charge. He believed the title better reflected the department's mission, but a new leader might soon be in charge of that mission.

A job posting on the county's website is already advertising the acceptance of applications for anyone interested in becoming the new animal control director. The salary range is $65,000 to $70,000 depending on qualifications. Applications are due May 23.

"The work continues," board Chairman Chris Lauzen said of the job posting.

Lauzen said he will follow the direction of Barb Jeffers in selecting a replacement this time. Jeffers is the executive director of the county's public health department, which oversees animal control.

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