Employee Who Charged Wrongful Transfer Settles With State

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - A state Transportation Cabinet employee who claimed he was transferred to a job more than 80 miles from his home for political reasons has agreed to a settlement with the agency.

Terry McKinney, a highway district manager from Kuttawa, would get an apology letter and a 10-percent raise under terms of the settlement, The (Frankfort) State Journal reported. McKinney, a Democrat and former Lyon County judge-executive, will get an annual salary of $84,500, under the agreement.

Attorney Paul Harnice said the settlement was reasonable, adding that the agency did not admit to any wrongdoing.

"The cabinet is glad to have resolved the matter with Mr. McKinney," Harnice told the newspaper.

McKinney had claimed he was forced into accepting a transfer and demotion in February 2005 because of politics. The transfer moved him from Madisonville to Paducah, a distance of about 85 miles.

Soon after Gov. Ernie Fletcher took office in 2003, a special grand jury began investigating a complaint that his administration had violated state hiring laws in a scheme to reward political supporters with state jobs. Fletcher and at least 14 of his aides and associates were indicted in the probe.

Fletcher pardoned everyone other than himself who could be charged in the investigation. The indictment against Fletcher was later dropped in a negotiated settlement with prosecutors, and Fletcher has since maintained that the charges were politically motivated.
Information from: The State Journal

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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