Another critic of Trumbull engineer addresses commissioners


Staff report

CORTLAND

Kendell L. Stauffer Jr., whose employment was terminated at the Trumbull County Engineer’s office, added his voice to the chorus of people accusing Engineer Randy Smith of harassment.

Stauffer, who lost his job in 2016 and was chief union steward at the time, spoke to the Trumbull County commissioners at their weekly meeting Wednesday at the county Agriculture and Family Education Center.

“I too have experienced bullying, harassment and intimidation by Trumbull County Engineer Randy Smith,” Stauffer read from a letter he submitted to the commissioners.

He said 30 others besides him have taken early retirement, quit or were fired “if you dare stand up to his harassment.” Stauffer wanted the commissioners to publicly condemn Smith’s actions.

But Commissioner Mauro Cantalamessa said the commissioners will await the outcome of an investigation by a recently hired law firm of harassment allegations by Trish Nuskievicz, director of the county planning commission, before making any comment on Smith.

Smith stood up to say he “took over [as county engineer] under very difficult circumstances back in 2011” because he had a different management style than the previous engineer, David DeChristofaro.

“Mr. Stauffer has had his day in state court, appeals court, federal court. None of his claims actually made it into the courtroom. They’re always tossed out, so this is just a little more sideshow,” Smith said of legal action Stauffer has filed against Smith.

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