Editorial: It’s time Knightdale pulls the plug on Powers feud

May 18, 2013 

The town of Knightdale has defended itself vigorously against accusations by former police officer Vickie Powers that the town unfairly demoted her and subjected her to a hostile work environment.

At first blush, that’s pretty much what you’d expect the town to do. We’re sure they consulted legal eagles throughout the process of her demotion to ensure they were on solid legal ground as they took those steps. And we’re sure the town didn’t knowingly allow a hostile work environment to exist unimpeded.

But at this point, according to reporting published in this paper last week the town has poured about $80,000 into its defense already. And that figure seems destined to rise the longer this battle goes on.

It’s unclear what Powers is asking in terms of retribution from the town. And it’s possible that the town’s $80,000 is a drop in the bucket compared to what Powers believes she’s entitled to.

But more likely the town is nearing the point of diminishing returns, in which they are spending more money to defend their decision than it would cost to settle with Powers and be done with the matter.

As stewards of the public till, it’s important that council members weigh the value of continuing the fight against the value of preserving public dollars that could be better spent serving the greater public good.

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