Federal judge orders Anderson to pay out $850k to 8 city workers fired during mayoral transition

ANDERSON, Ind. (AP) – A federal judge has ruled the city of Anderson must pay about $850,000 to eight people who were fired when a new mayor took office in 2012.

The decision by U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt comes after a federal jury sided last year with 11 people who filed a lawsuit claiming they were wrongfully fired by Republican Mayor Kevin Smith’s administration because they supported the Democratic incumbent in the 2011 city election.

Our news gathering partners at the Anderson Herald Bulletin report Pratt ordered payments for lost wages, benefits, and damages to eight of the workers. The jury didn’t award damages to the other three.

Smith’s attorney argued the workers were fired because they held policy-making or confidential positions or had poor job performance. Smith lost his re-election bid in 2015.

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