Sparks City Council Meeting 7/13/2015 2:00:00 PM

    Monday, July 13, 2015 2:00 PM
    City Council Chambers, Legislative Bldg, 745 Fourth St., Sparks

General Business: 9.7

Title: Consideration and Possible Approval of a Settlement and Severance Package between the City of Sparks and Ginny Sievert Regarding Disputed Litigation.
Petitioner/Presenter: Doug Thornley/Doug Thornley
Recommendation: That the City Council authorize the payment of a settlement in the amount of $194,704 to Mr. Frank Gilmore, Esq. AND his client.
Financial Impact: An expenditure of $194,704 will be necessary if the City Council approves the settlement.
Total Costs: $194,704.00
Fund: Municipal Self-Insurance    Account: 603260
Program: Fire Dept in Muni Ins Fund (050523)
Amount: $194,704.00    Budget Status: Budget Exists
Business Impact (Per NRS 237):
A Business Impact Statement is not required because this is not a rule.
Agenda Item Brief:

Possible final resolution of an ongoing litigation.


Ginny Sievert is a Captain with the Sparks Fire Department. In 2012, Captain Sievert initiated a lawsuit against the City in the United States District Court alleging various violations of Title VII. The Court has twice granted the City’s Motions for Summary Judgment. Captain Sievert appealed the rulings to the Ninth Circuit, where the matter is now pending.

Pursuant to negotiations, and upon the recommendation of the City Attorney, the City Council is now being asked to approve the settlement of the claim for up to $194,704.


Although the City - to this point – successfully defended against Sievert’s claims, it is unlikely that the relationship between the parties will improve. Rather than become mired in an endless cycle of litigation, which brings with it significant costs (both monetary and operationally within the Fire Department) it is the opinion of the City Attorney’s Office that the most prudent path forward for both parties is to sever the employment relationship pursuant to settlement.

Upon approval of the Agreement, Captain Sievert will be placed on paid Administrative Leave pending final arrangements with Nevada PERS.


The City Council could accept or deny the settlement based upon information it receives from the City Attorney during the attorney client session.

Recommended Motion:

Approval of Settlement:

If the City Council decides to approve the settlement offer, the motion should state:

Based upon the advice provided by the city’s attorney, I move to approve the settlement of the litigation brought by Mr. Frank Gilmore, Esq. on behalf of his client, for up to $194,074.


Rejection of Settlement:

Alternatively, the City Council can reject the proposed settlement.  If the City Council decides to reject it, the motion should state:

I move to reject the settlement of the litigation brought by Mr. Frank Gilmore, Esq. on behalf of his client.

Attached Files:
     Sievert Settlement and Severance Agreement.pdf
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