Another ex-official in Bell, California is trying to squeeze money out of the city she allegedly defrauded.
Former assistant city manager Angela Spaccia is suing Bell for back pay and legal costs, arguing that the city unlawfully fired her after allegations that she had used public funds to inflate her salary.
Courthouse News reports that in her complaint, Spaccia alleges that the city didn’t give her the required 30-days notice about her firing, and that according to her contract she could only be fired for “conviction of a felony or crime involving moral turpitude.”
From the complaint: “In or about July of 2010, the attorney for the city negotiated an agreement with plaintiff pertaining to the termination of her employment with the city, which included salary and other various benefits. However, the city failed to perform the terms of that agreement. In or about August of 2010, the city unlawfully stopped compensating plaintiff.”
Spaccia also claims that in August, 2010, she received a letter from the city confirming her “voluntary resignation,” though she had not done so. “Rather, this letter constructively and or impliedly terminated plaintiff’s employment with the city,” the complaint says.
Spaccia and seven other city officials are charged with fraud and misappropriation of public funds for allegedly using public funds to inflate their salaries for part-time jobs. Spaccia herself was earning $376,000 a year.
Former Bell city manager Robert Rizzo — who sued the city earlier this week for stopping payment on his $1.5 million salary and benefits — was banking $787,637 by the time the revelations about the salaries came to light.
Current Bell Councilman Rick Valencia told Courthouse News that Rizzo and Spaccia are trying to get away with “legal robbery” and “are holding the citizens hostage with their lawsuits.”