Henderson, former city manager agree on $1.3 million settlement


A former Henderson city manager who sued after she was fired in 2009 will get almost $1.3 million under a settlement scheduled for City Council approval next week.

Attorneys for Mary Kay Peck and the city agreed on the $1,287,099 settlement after an arbitrator upheld Peck's breach-of-contract claim in December.

City Council members are expected to vote on the settlement when they meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Peck spent 18 months as Henderson's first female city manager before being dismissed with cause by the City Council on April 14, 2009.

Arbitrator Gerald McKay ruled that council members failed to prove they had sufficient cause to fire Peck from the $225,000-a-year job, and he gave the city 30 days to negotiate damages with her.

McKay died of a heart attack while scuba diving in Bali on Jan. 27, but Peck's attorney, Norman Kirshman, said the arbitrator's death should not affect the outcome of the case.

Peck, who now lives in Florida, was seeking more than $2 million.

She was fired for "intentional and continuing failure to perform the job." Council members at the time accused her of withholding vital information from them and creating a "culture of fear" at City Hall.

Kirshman has said Peck received no formal performance reviews during her time as manager or anything in writing that found fault with how she was doing her job.

He said his client received no formal severance package . She walked away with about $160,000 in accrued sick leave, health benefits and pension payments.

Kirshman said he would have no further comment on the settlement until the City Council votes on it.

 

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