Youngstown gave severance packages to two former workers

By David Skolnick


The city’s board of control approved a $23,108 severance package for a former fire-department captain being investigated for improperly taking money from the city firefighters union’s account and a $24,063 severance to a fired health- department official.

The board voted Thursday to approve the payments to former Fire Capt. Destry Rush, who resigned April 13, and Cicero Davis III, the former director of environmental health, who was fired April 15.

City Law Director Martin Hume, who sits on the board, said there isn’t a choice in paying the two former employees the severances because it is money — largely for unused vacation time — owed to them.

“These were not extra benefits provided to” them, Hume said. “They were earned.”

Rush served as treasurer of the Youngstown Professional Fire Fighters, International Association of Firefighters Local 312.

An announcement about an undisclosed amount of money improperly taken was made April 14, the day after Rush’s sudden resignation.

City police are investigating.

Rush, hired in 1993, was earning about $62,000 annually as a fire captain.

Of the $23,108 Rush is receiving, $15,048 is for unused sick time, $7,154 for unused vacation time, and the rest for unpaid accumulated time, and extra pay for hazardous duty and a uniform allowance.

Davis, who earned about $56,000 annually, surrendered his state registration as a sanitarian March 26 as part of an agreement with the Ohio Sanitarian Registration Board.

He admitted incompetence, unprofessional conduct and dereliction of duty, but not allegations he forged inspection reports. An internal city investigation in April 2013 determined that Davis falsified records and possessed sexually explicit material on his work computer.

Davis has a May 22 hearing in front of the city’s Civil Service Commission regarding employment with the health department. Davis isn’t disqualified from applying for other employment with the city.

Of the $24,063 Davis is receiving, $17,830 was for unused sick time, $5,891 for unused vacation time, and the rest for compensatory time and a quarterly bonus for not being off sick for a three-month period.

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