Property appraiser settles federal suit

County’s property appraiser is now settled and Rick Singh is not admitting he did anything wrong he is agreeing to give eighty four thousand tax dollars to a former employee new 6 reporter clay Lepard is here with new details on this clay Lisa this settles a federal and civil lawsuit filed by singh’s former human resources manager a man who claimed he was harassed bullied and even discriminated against but this does not mean the end of Singh’s legal problems inside the walls of the orange county property appraiser’s office Willis Perry says he encountered a dysfunctional mismanaged and oppressive work environment in the year and a half he served as the human resources manager here blaming much of it on Singh’s former Director of Communications Laverne McGee in a lawsuit filed back in August Perry claimed he was suspended and ultimately fired for complaining about the work environment as well as reporting unethical illegal and fraudulent activities in the office including altering documents and fabricating explanations to justify travel expenses the settlement comes just weeks after the Florida Department of Law Enforcement announced it was looking into allegations against Singh that he misused taxpayer funds the FDLE opened that investigation after two former employees filed a lawsuit claiming Singh falsified documents and brought strippers to the office a judge previously dismissed four of the six charges in Willis Perry’s case but a spokesperson with the orange county property appraiser’s office told News six they settled the remaining harassment and bullying charges saying in part we recognized the difficulty in defending the remaining claims against the orange county property appraiser’s office by mr. Perry alleging that its former director of communications harassed him and created a hostile work environment given this difficulty we concluded that it was in the best interests of the office and the taxpayers to avoid protracted and costly litigation and to emic ibly settle those claims we’re told the director of communications involved in all this no longer works at the office and we’re also told there is still an ongoing lawsuit between her and the property appraiser’s office as it prompted that FDLE inquiry back to you

Stephen Childs

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