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Former chief of Jefferson County Parks and Recreation Commission, board of directors settle suit

April 04, 2012|By RICHARD F. BELISLE | richardb@herald-mail.com
  • Tim Barr, former executive director of the Jefferson County Parks and Recreation Commission, is shown in this file photo.
Herald-Mail file photo

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. — A $285,000 settlement has ended litigation between the fired executive director of the Jefferson County Parks and Recreation Commission and the commission’s board of directors, according to a posted copy of the documents.

Tim Barr will receive $100,000 from the Parks and Recreation Commission’s budget and $185,000 from its insurance company, under the settlement.

Barr and his attorney, Harry P. Waddell, verified Wednesday that an agreement was reached on the lawsuit Barr filed in October 2010, a month after he was terminated from his position while he was away on vacation.

Barr was fired on a 6-2 vote. The commissioners claimed he had lost the confidence of the board.

Barr said he was notified by e-mail that he was being terminated and that he was no longer allowed on commission property.

Barr, 42, worked for the commission for 16 years.

The settlement, which was filed in Jefferson County Circuit Court, was published on listener@yahoogroups.com, a Jefferson County website,  Jefferson County Commissioner Dale Manuel said.

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Manuel is the county commission’s nonvoting ex-officio representative on the Jefferson County Parks and Recreation Commission’s board of directors.

“That’s a lot of money,” Manuel said Tuesday.

The document confirms the $285,000 settlement, which it calls a confidential agreement. It said the parks and recreation commission agreed to accept the settlement offer on Feb. 28.

“I’m not going to comment (on the amount),” said county Commissioner Lyn Widmyer. “That settlement was made by the (parks and recreation commission) board of directors.”

Named as defendants in Barr’s four-count lawsuit were the commission, its president, Paul Marshall, and commission members Toni Milbourne (who is no longer a member) and Bobby Shirley, Jefferson County’s sheriff. The lawsuit claimed defamation, discrimination and retaliation, according to court records.

Marshall could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

“I didn’t do anything wrong but everybody assumed that I did,” Barr said Wednesday. “I filed the suit to clear my name. They wouldn’t have agreed to settle this otherwise. Now I just want to move on with my life.”
 

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