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Chapman: City auditor deserved better

By Staff | Sep 5, 2014

For several months, members of the Rugby City Council have been encouraged and reminded to attend a much-needed leadership conference in Minot later this month. In addition, the city and its employees will team up with Heart of America Correctional and Treatment Center for another leadership course here in town.

While the council is at it, members may also consider attending a free event hosted by Rugby Public Schools on Sept. 17.

RPS is hosting V.J. Smith, author of the book “The Richest Man in Town.” The book is about a well-respected and admired cashier at a Wal-Mart store. The event’s press release speaks of the impact the man named Marty had and the author lauds the cashier as “living proof that you don’t need money, power or title to make a difference in life. You just need to care.”

The cashier is described as “a legend in an unexpected place because he treated everybody with dignity, kindness and respect.”

Had the same been shown to our city auditor, the council wouldn’t be in the unfortunate circumstance of having to replace her. Dawn Hauck turned in her letter of resignation to the city council at Tuesday’s regular monthly meeting.

Hauck’s letter reads: “There are certain issues that have never been dealt with that have caused me to ignore the moral beliefs that make me who I am. I have decided that it is not in my best interest to continue down that path and therefore must resign as City Auditor.”

Hauck continues: “Sweeping things under the rug that really should be dealt with immediately instead of hoping it goes away is not acceptable for me and is one of the main reasons that I am resigning.”

Hauck told the Tribune that the issues she aludes to involve the public works department and a couple council members.

Mayor Arland Geiszler and public works committee chairman Terry Wentz agreed that the issues have been addressed. Public Works Supervisor Rick Larson said he is not aware of the issues referred to in the letter.

Ward 2 Council Member Dave Bednarz disagreed.

“I feel exactly the same way (Hauck) does,” Bednarz said. “In fact, I might send in my letter too. I think issues weren’t taken care of.”

A few months back, Bednarz expressed dismay at the way other council members and city employees treated Hauck. He also called for more transparency because the full council was not notified of the personnel issue Hauck was being dissuaded from bringing to light.

When will the dishonesty and bullying end?

Geiszler’s praise of Hauck is somewhat encouraging and at least acknowledges that things need to change.

“She’s a very talented young lady and very highly principaled,” he said. “What’s right is right and there’s not much gray area in her work.”

So something wrong is going on. If you’ve met Hauck, you know how dedicated she is to her work. She recently gave birth to a daughter and still worked in and out of the office in following weeks. To hear that someone of that work ethic – in a role so vital to the city – was disrespected to the point of resignation is sickening.

We wish Hauck the best in her new role as the business manager with Rugby Public Schools and sincerely thank her for approaching her work ethically.

Will the next auditor be run off too?

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