Former Rolling Meadows finance chief gets $10,000 in extra pay, mostly for added manager duties

  • Melissa Gallagher

    Melissa Gallagher

 
 
Posted11/24/2021 5:12 AM

Former longtime Rolling Meadows Finance Director Melissa Gallagher will receive nearly $10,000 in severance and retroactive pay for serving as temporary city manager in her last few months before she left for a new job in Lake County.

The city council Tuesday night approved payments of $3,166.78 in severance and $6,833.22 in retroactive pay for Gallagher's added management responsibilities, between City Manager Barry Krumstok's firing July 13 and Gallagher's resignation Oct. 22.

 

Aldermen approved the additional compensation unanimously and without discussion as part of an employment separation and release agreement on the consent agenda.

Though the four-page document includes a lengthy general release statement -- whereby Gallagher agrees not to bring any "claims, actions, causes of action, demands and liabilities" against the city -- Rolling Meadows city hall sources said the contract language is boilerplate, and Gallagher does not have any claims or pending litigation against the city.

A search of federal court records also did not turn up any litigation involving Gallagher and the city.

Gallagher, now the deputy finance director for Lake County government, didn't respond to a request for comment.

When Gallagher announced her resignation in a news release Sept. 29, she said she looked forward to the next chapter in her career after 15 years in Rolling Meadows, but would miss working for the city. She and her family still plan to reside in town.

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In the same announcement, Mayor Joe Gallo heaped praise on Gallagher, calling her "an asset to the city."

She took the helm of day-to-day operations at city hall soon after aldermen voted 5-2 to dismiss Krumstok. That vote came a day after Krumstok filed suit against the city and Gallo, who had placed the 22-year city employee on administrative leave and asked him to resign only days earlier.

Krumstok alleged employment retaliation and discrimination, arguing that his firing stemmed from a personal vendetta dating back to 2019. Gallo denied the accusations.

The council settled the lawsuit for $250,000 last month, inking a 10-page general release and settlement agreement in which Krumstok agreed to dismiss the suit and release the city, its insurance provider and Gallo of any liability and claims.

While the council's closed-door search for a new city manager continues, Police Chief John Nowacki is serving as temporary city manager. The council is contracting with a temporary staffing agency and Thomas Glaser, the former College of DuPage and Cook County finance boss, to oversee the finance department.

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