City of Bozeman Schedules Special Meeting, Places City Manager on Administrative Leave
Friday Feb. 16th, 2024
UPDATE - On Monday, Feb. 12, Bozeman City Commission adopted the following motions: a motion to ask the City Manager to resign by Wednesday, Feb. 14; and a motion to direct the City Attorney’s office to draft an ethics complaint. We tabled a motion to initiate an external investigation into the City Manager’s conduct. The Commission may take this tabled motion up at a future public meeting.
Since then, City Manager Jeff Mihelich has offered to resign on the condition he be provided full severance as stated in the Employment Agreement. At this time, the City Commission is not inclined to accept resignation with full severance.
We currently anticipate an ethics complaint being presented for consideration at the March 5, 2024 City Commission meeting. Commission may decide to authorize the filing of the complaint at this meeting. More information on the ethics process can be found in the Bozeman Municipal Code at Chapter 2, Article, 3, Division 4 (2.03.460, Bozeman Municipal Code).
BOZEMAN, Montana (Feb. 2, 2024) — Bozeman City Commission has scheduled a Special Meeting to discuss a video that surfaced on social media on Tuesday evening of a meeting between the City Manager and an employee. The Special Meeting will be held on Feb. 12 at 6 p.m. at City Hall, 121 N Rouse Ave, and online at https://www.bozeman.net/departments/city-commission/meeting-videos. During the meeting, Bozeman’s elected body will address next steps for the City Manager.
Additionally, as of Thursday, Feb. 1, City Manager Jeff Mihelich is on paid administrative leave. Assistant City Manager Kira Peters has been appointed to act as City Manager until Assistant City Manager Chuck Winn can assume the Acting City Manager role on Tuesday, Feb. 6.
“We hope residents know that we are taking this event seriously and are committed to communicating through it,” Mayor Terry Cunningham stated. “This is not reflective of the organization that we are trying to build and of the many employees who dutifully and respectfully serve the public every day.”
City functions continue as normal, including the Feb. 6 Commission meeting. This meeting will include the ratification of Mihelich’s administrative leave and no other discussion on the video or items related to the Special Meeting will occur.
The video occurred earlier in January after a leadership meeting that is routinely recorded for internal notetaking purposes wrapped up. The two employees stayed on after the meeting and the recording continued. Upon review, the City has determined that no outside breach to gain the video content has occurred.
Those interested in submitting public comment to the Bozeman City Commission regarding this issue or any other can do so by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.