DANVILLE, Ill. (WCIA) – A lawsuit filed against the Vermilion County Board of Health by former Administrator Douglas Toole has come to an end. In a quick special meeting, board members unanimously approved a settlement agreement Monday.
There was no discussion between board members, and in a matter of minutes, it was over. Apart from approving the agenda, voting on the settlement agreement was the only item on their to-do list.
In a statement, Toole’s attorney Ronald Langacker said: “Doug has worked for the Vermilion County Health Department since 1992, and is glad that he is able to leave the department on good terms. We appreciate the fact that the board was willing to resolve this matter amicably in the early stages of litigation.”
The comments came within minutes of adjournment Monday. Langacker said under the agreement, Toole will receive back wages from the day he resigned in November through March 27, an additional three months’ severance and reimbursement for legal fees. He also said: “Neither party admits to any fault, liability, or wrongdoing.”
The lawsuit claimed Board President Brad Gross told Toole the board “had lost faith” in his ability to lead the Health Department and gave him an ultimatum – either step down or be fired. It then said Toole was “shocked” and “involuntarily coerced” into resigning immediately.
The lawsuit also claimed the board violated the Open Meetings Act on November 10 in several ways, including taking final action in closed session to notify Toole of the ultimatum. The complaint said Toole had been damaged “in amounts to be proven at trial, including suffering, embarrassment, stress and other compensatory damages.”
WCIA reached out to Toole directly for comment. He referred reporters back to his attorney.
Board President Brad Gross declined to give a statement after the meeting, suggesting reporters contact Assistant State’s Attorney Kevin Schneider. Schneider could not be reached for comment Monday evening.