1. Pinellas

Madeira Beach ousts public works director

MADEIRA BEACH — Newly appointed Public Works and Marina Director Charles Jordan was forced to resign last week after allegations against him at his previous job in Largo became public.

"It was a mutual separation," City Manager Jonathan Evans said Tuesday, confirming an allegation of Jordan sending improper text messages of a sexual nature to another employee while both were on a city-related trip out of town in 2017.

At the time, Jordan was Largo's assistant director of public works and facilities manager.

According to Evans, the city of Largo never opened an investigation into the 2018 allegation since Jordan resigned three days after a formal complaint was filed against him.

Evans said Jordan was "highly qualified" and the city's standard background check had failed to uncover the allegation against Jordan by a Largo city employee.

"Based on nature of allegation I decided it was better that this was not what we wanted for our executive management team . If we had known this during the screening of more than 30 candidates for the position, we would have eliminated him from consideration." said Evans.

Jordan's position has been temporarily filled by Parks supervisor Debora Laramee, who has more than 30 years experience with the city. Filling the position permanently is on hold, according to Evans.

Jordan could not be reached for comment.