*Editor’s Note: Portage Co. Executive Patty Dreier emphatically denies having fired Stokes, a task she cannot undertake legally. Under state law, Stokes can only be removed from office by a two-third majority vote by the Portage Co. Board of Supervisors.
To the Citizens of Portage County:
I am resigning effective Thursday, September 29 from the Office of Portage County Treasurer.
Because County Executive Patty Dreier has locked me out of the Courthouse and the Treasurer’s office, and has told staff that she has fired me, which she has no legal right to do, she has made it impossible for me to do my job. Therefore, I have no choice but to resign, but do so under protest. I have so informed the Attorney General, and plan to follow up.
The County Executive publicly expressed her discontent with the due process of the law, the pace of the Attorney General’s investigation concerning the Treasurer’s Office (based on a single very small and immediately remedied incident in the office year ago) and a personal hunch and vendetta by County Board Chairman O. Phillip Idsvoog. Chairman Idsvoog is verifiably [sic] reported to have said to an investigating officer, “Just find something on her.”
Dreier decided to bypass the Attorney General’s procedure after a year of no response from the Attorney General, taking it upon herself to declare her accusations to be fact, and releasing to the public her trumped up “charges” as if they are fact.
The only reason the Attorney General has been involved is because our County Board Chairman and Executive Dreier thought it was an opportune time to replace me after 17 years of service, and destroy my good name and character.
An honest person deserves to be assumed innocent, as I am, until proven guilty.
Mrs. Dreier then decided to bypass the Board of Supervisors (who make the decision in such things as removal) and summarily “fired” me, the County Treasurer, a legally elected official–another action that is clearly illegal. Those are the true facts of what has occurred in relation to the Treasurer’s office during the past year.
In these actions Executive Dreier has run roughshod over personnel in the Treasurer’s Office, and has flagrantly and destructively violated their civil and human rights.
I hope that the voters take this situation seriously, and think long and hard when deciding what kind of person you want leading your County employees and running your County government.
At this time the County offices are a poisonous environment filled with frightened, bullied, and intimidated employees, wondering if they will be the next persons to be dismissed.
Portage Co. Treasurer