Dan Johnson seeks settlement that would allow him to keep Metro - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Dan Johnson seeks settlement that would allow him to keep Metro Council seat

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Louisville Metro Councilman Dan Johnson's attorney has proposed a settlement with the council's charging committee that would allow him to remain in his position and avoid a "protracted and embarrassing trial."

The proposal, from attorney Thomas McAdam, was sent to council president David Yates on Monday. 

Yates is acting as a judge, and mediator, in the effort to oust Johnson for allegations of sexual harassment, exposing himself and disorderly behavior. Yates wrote up a similar settlement proposal last week, but McAdam and a few council members immediately rejected it.

The council charging committee, which includes three Democrats and two Republicans, has filed formal charges against Johnson and is seeking to remove him from office. Johnson is accused of "misconduct, incapacity and willful neglect" of his duties.

The proposal would suspend the removal hearing, set for Nov. 1, allow Johnson in City Hall only to attend meetings and prohibit him from having contact with other council members or staffers except by phone or email.

Johnson would also agree not to run for council in 2018.

The settlement would allow the city to avoid "subsequent litigation" if Johnson is removed, according to the proposal.

Johnson, according to the proposal, "insists that it was never his intention to embarrass, harass, or intimidate any of the individuals who have complained of his behavior."

However, Johnson "freely admits and stipulates" that his conduct was "ungentlemanly and inappropriate, and that anyone could reasonable (sic) interpret his actions as being embarrassing, harassing, or intimidating," according to McAdam's proposal.

McAdam wrote that Johnson would apologize to individual council members and publicly to the entire council "for the embarrassment and consternation his actions have caused." The wording of the apology would be approved by all parties in advance, according to the proposal. 

Johnson would agree to only come to city hall for council meetings, allowed to be there 30 minutes before and stay 30 minutes after the meetings have ended,and  "at all other times shall remain off the premises," under the proposal. He would be able to vote and participate during meetings. Other times, Johnson would work on council business from home.

In addition, Johnson would agree to a "public censure" and will "comport himself in such a manner as to not bring scorn or disrepute on his office," according to the proposal. A council member chosen by the charging committee would be selected to review his conduct. 

Yates said he received the proposal and sent it to the charging committee and its attorney. Councilwoman Jessica Green, who is on the charging committee, said she had not yet seen the proposal and declined to comment.

Other members could not be immediately reached. 

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