A former city manager has filed a lawsuit against the City of Grenada citing that her eight-month contract was unlawfully breached as one of the reasons.
Lakeylah White, who served as city manager for only two months, filed the lawsuit in the Grenada County Circuit Clerk’s Office last week.
White was fired in Nov. 2019, after replacing Trey Baker as city manager.
According to the lawsuit, “White charges the action for actual and compensatory damages.... “for breach of contract, due process violation, unlawful termination of her employment, deprivation of property interest in her employment, and adverse personnel actions that took place during her employment.”
The lawsuit names the City of Grenada as Defendants and individually names Mayor Billy Collins, Ward 2 City Councilman Pete Wilson, Ward 1 Councilman Warren Cox and former City Manager Trina George.
According to the lawsuit, White was removed as city manager after a vote by the city council and was not provided written notice of her removal or the reasons for such action as required by state law (Section 21-9-7).
White was hired in Aug. 2019 for an eight month salary of $75,000. The lawsuit states that as a result of the contract, White altered her plans by turning down a consulting role and resigned from another position.
In November, the Grenada City Council voted 5-1-1 to dismiss White after two months. George was hired as her replacement at a salary of $85,000.
The lawsuit states, “The Defendants gave no valid reason for the dismissal of White, termination of her employment agreement.”
Wilson said the city will now turnover the claims to their insurance attorneys.
“We had some indication that she would be doing this,” Wilson said. “I can’t say too much about it right now.”
Prior to being hired as city manager, White’s company Grants Unlimited had been accepted by the city council as the writer/administrator for the 2019 HOME Rehab grant for the city.
According to the lawsuit, the city council voted to hire the North Central Planning and Development District to administer the 2019 HOME Rehab grant a week after White was dismissed.
“As a result of the acts and conduct of the individual defendants named, Plantiff White seeks actual, compensatory and punitive damages from the individual defendants in their personal capacity, and all attorney’s fees and costs as authorized in bringing her claim under 42 U.S. code Section 1983.” According to the lawsuit White is seeking more than $530,000 for her claims. She could not comment on the lawsuit.