WeHo Settles Fran Solomon Complaint; Michelle Rex Negotiation is Wednesday

The City of West Hollywood has agreed to pay $25,000 to Fran Solomon, the former deputy to City Councilmember John Heilman, to settle her claim that she was the victim of bullying, harassment, intimidation and defamation by Councilmember John D’Amico and by other council deputies. In the final settlement, Solomon’s allegation against D’Amico, which he has denied, was removed.

 Fran Solomon
Fran Solomon

Solomon filed the claim in June of last year with the Public Employment Relations Board, the state agency responsible for enforcing the collective bargaining laws covering city employees.

The settlement is the latest in what is likely to be a series of stemming from the city council’s decision in last summer to dismantle the deputy system, which was created when the city was organized in 1984. The system has been controversial since its inception, with complaints that some deputies campaigned for the council members to whom they reported and that some interfered with the work of other city employees. Some residents also complained about the compensation of council deputies.

In February the City of West Hollywood agreed to pay $500,000 to settle a lawsuit brought by Ian Owens, deputy to Councilmember John Duran, against Duran and the city. Owens alleged that he was sexually harassed by Duran and that city officials ignored his complaints that Solomon had campaigned for her boss while on city time. Duran has denied Owens’ allegations. In its settlement, which was made in part under pressure from the city’s insurer, the city did not accept any of the allegations.

On Wednesday morning there will be a settlement conference at the Stanley Mosk courthouse in downtown Los Angeles regarding a lawsuit brought against the city in March by Michelle Rex, former deputy to Councilmember John D’Amico, over the council’s decision to eliminate the deputy positions. In her suit, Rex is seeking unspecified damages on allegations of wrongful discharge, retaliation and failure to prevent retaliation. She is being represented by attorney Aanand Mehtani, who also represented Owens.

  1. Ah, that picture again! Pray thee sir that this might be the final time we are compelled to endure this inscrutable countenance. Out! Out, damn’d spot! Out, out I say!

  2. So the Friends of Frannie are now saying she is responsible for West Hollywood’s economic vitality ? Great revisionist history. Fran was undoubtedly devoted to her boss, John Heilman, and for all the good she did she did plenty to sow discord inside and outside City Hall. I remember her as being in the forefront of slandering Allegra Allison saying that Allison was only fighting to “Save Tara” because she wanted a bigger relocation fee. While many believed this lie in fact from day one, Allegra said she would refuse any relocation fee and she was true to her word. This sort of petty, high school behavior did not reflect well on the City nor does it inspire much faith in City Hall.

    Fran’s campaigning at City Hall for John Heilman’s re-election on the taxpayer’s time lead to her well deserved severance from City Hall. Certainly $25,000 is a lot closer to a “nuisance” settlement than the half million City Attorney Mike Jenkins claims was “nuisance value” in the Ian Owens case. Of course it could have been zero had the City been aggressive in defending itself against this frivolous lawsuit.

  3. The settlement proves that her allegations were without merit and treats her lawsuit as a nuisance case. At least she has more city money to spend and tawny eateries (hopefully in Weho) as she did when she was a Deputy.

  4. Whatever to the lot of the comments. Fran was amazing at her job and if she was paid double it would not be enough. Our city is/was the best run city in California. When other cities are closing parks we rebuild ours with a spectacular library. We have art in the streets, we spend more on social services that any other city. When you do what they do day in day out 16 hours a day then feel free to comment.

  5. I am sure everyone will complain about this, but it definitely pales in comparison to the last payout, and is much less than I would have expected.

    She left her position making about $100K a year, not including benefits. I will bet she has quite the tidy pension package as well, as she worked for the city for many years. That’s quite the golden parachute, for someone who was rumored to be quite abrasive.


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