Rusty Wells

When all the dust settled there was only one man who wanted the new City Council job. His name is Donald Kraher. Rusty Wells and Al Coby were in charge of interviewing and evaluating his qualifications for the job. The Council intends to pay him the exact salary the mayor receives. So what did Mr. Wells do to determine if Mr. Kraher should be hired? Apparently he observed an in-person interview and did nothing else. Had he spent a couple of hours looking into Mr. Kraher’s background, here is what he would have learned: Mr. Kraher has had his law license suspended and has had numerous judgments against him.

When the relevant documents were recently made available to Wells, he once again did nothing other than call Mr. Kraher. He should have inquired about a lot more than Mr. Kraher’s current personal bankruptcy. Mr. Wells could have saved Mr. Kraher substantial embarrassment by advising him these matters that were just learned by Mr. Wells, placed the offer of employment to Mr. Kraher subject to further review.

Mr. Wells has embarrassed the city council by his handling of the vetting process. The City Council made an offer of employment based on Mr. Wells’s assurance that Mr. Kraher had made full and truthful disclosures about his background.

Donald Kraher, Cover Letter and Résumé

There was no disclosure of Mr. Kraher’s suspended law license.

Here is Mr. Wells’s response to the information he learned after the job offer was extended:

Rusty Wells Email to City Council

Note that Mr. Wells does not mention the many judgments against Mr. Kraher. He refers to proceedings in the bankruptcy court as “entirely personal matters”. Of course they are. They couldn’t be anything else. Mr Kraher has had long standing and extensive financial problems. Among other debts he could not pay, Mr. Kraher failed to pay student loans. Mr. Wells seems to fault the public disclosure of information he should have learned and that he had an absolute duty to disclose to the City Council – had he done his job.

So, what job does Mr. Kraher now have? He is the assistant City Manager in a town of 6,700 people in a City manager form of government. He has had the job since February of 2013. The résumé he submitted shows he is a lawyer in practice in Missouri.

Mr. Kraher’s response:

Donald Kraher Memo to Council

The first paragraph is grammatically wrong and makes little sense, but more importantly, Mr. Kraher offers no explanation for not disclosing all the judgments against him. He claims he was transparent, but never disclosed on his résumé his law license problem. His explanation for allowing his license to practice law to be suspended makes no sense whatsoever. Lawyers don’t allow their license to practice law to be suspended for the reasons he has indicated.

Mr. Wells is paid by the city but assigned to the City Council. He works on the behalf of the City Council. He now seeks to dismiss as unimportant all the matters that are here disclosed. The City Council should advise Mr. Kraher that, based on his failure to disclose these many serious adverse details about his qualifications, this requires the withdrawal of the offer of employment. It is a shame Mr. Wells allowed this to get to this point.

This entry was posted in City of Pensacola, Escambia County, Florida, Pensacola City Council and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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