City, officer part ways

BLUE EARTH — The city of Blue Earth has agreed to part ways with police officer Chad Bonin.

The City Council met recently to review an investigation into a complaint filed against Bonin.

Council members Glenn Gaylord, John Huisman and Russ Erichsrud, along with Mayor Rick Scholtes and City Administrator Tim Ibisch, went into closed session immediately after having opened the meeting. About seven minutes later, they came back into open session.

Scholtes then said the council needed to make three official motions: to take no further action on the investigation, to accept the separation of employment with Bonin, and to authorize the city administrator and police chief to pursue filling the vacancy of a full-time officer.

The council passed all three motions.

According to a separation of employment agreement from City Attorney David Frundt, the mutual agreement to terminate Bonin’s contract was official Feb. 13, which was Bonin’s final date of employment. The agreement states there is no admission by the employee or employer of any wrongful conduct whatsoever.

“Both parties deny and disclaim any liability to or wrongful conduct against the other or any third party,” the agreement reads.

As consideration for the agreement and release, the city will pay Bonin’s earned and accrued benefits, including 236 hours of sick leave, at a cost of $6,735; 47 hours of vacation leave, at $1,353; and 93 hours of comp time, at $2,665.

Bonin’s annual salary is $60,765.

The city also must continue to pay for Bonin’s current health, dental and short-term disability coverages for three months, ending May 31.

Bonin has been with the police department since March 27, 2012.

He was placed on paid administrative leave on Dec. 7, 2018, after the complaint was filed and the investigation begun by an outside agency.