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Arvada Fire chief receives $124,000 to retire after investigation into family

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ARVADA, Colo. -- An investigation into potential misconduct ultimately led the Arvada Fire Protection District chief and his wife to part ways with their employer.

Chief Jon Greer retired Oct. 21. His wife, Lauri Greer, submitted a letter of resignation the same day.

The two were being investigated after Lauri Greer, an accounting clerk, was accused of trying to fix an accounting error by using a method that cost taxpayers approximately $8,000.

Her husband oversaw and approved her actions, according to records obtained by the FOX31 Problem Solvers.

Lauri Greer’s brother, John Culler, a battalion chief, is also under investigation and on paid administrative leave.

However, it is unclear whether Culler is linked to the investigation involving the Greers.

According to a notice of intended discipline on Aug. 26, Lauri Greer “neglected to deduct employee (457 retirement contributions) from overtime pay for the payrolls disbursed on May 24, and June 7, 2019.  In order to ensure that employee (457 retirement balances) were not impacted by this error, Lauri Greer obtained approval from Chief Jon Greer to contribute the employee contributions (using taxpayer funds) that would normally be contributed by employees.”

The disciplinary notice also accused Lauri Greer of failing to “appropriately compensate” four other employees during a payroll in August.

Jon Greer had served in some capacity at the district for more than 40 years and will receive $124,000 in exchange for his retirement.

According to the retirement agreement, Jon Greer would be paid 8 1/2 months of his annual salary of $175,000. The district board also agreed to stop its investigation into him.

“Employee’s personnel matter that was being investigated will be concluded upon the execution of this agreement and no further employment action with Employee will be taken,” the retirement agreement read.

The terms of Greer’s retirement agreement also prevent him from working within the fire district in the future.

“There is no indication whatsoever that criminal activity took place,” said Mike Piper, the interim Arvada chief.

“I do not think this is representative of how all other members of the organization carry themselves. And I think that the quality of service that is being provided and has been provided by the great men and women of the Arvada (Fire) Protection District hasn’t been compromised in any way shape or form by what’s going on here."

An internal email from 2015 showed Jon Greer expressed some reservations when his wife was hired as the accounting clerk.

“I’m a little worried about the pushback,” he wrote.

In September, the district adopted a new policy to prevent future conflicts of interest involving employees and family members.

“You can surmise for yourself whether that has something to do with this situation or not, but the reality is this organization is doing what it can do to prevent close family relationships from having influence over matters at work,” Piper said.

The Greers declined to comment. Culler said he was unable to comment because of the policy in the employee manual.

No one from the fire board made themselves available to discuss the situation.

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