City of Hutto: Ex-employees used official info for personal gain

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HUTTO, Texas (KXAN) — Hutto’s city attorney is requesting an outside investigation into whether or not city employees misused official information.

The city released a press release stating it has identified a series of incidents where employees and others might have disclosed or used information that they obtained by means of their employment for non-governmental purposes. Texas law prohibits public servants from releasing information that would not have otherwise been public.

The city says its investigation revealed some former city employees and potentially others abused their access to official information. “In particular, these employees appear to have taken information they had access to only because of their positions as employees of the city of Hutto and disclosed that information for some form of personal gain,” said the city in the release.

Within a few hours of the first press release on Wednesday, the city sent out a statement stating a report compiled by attorney Judy Osborne was leaked by the former employees. The city says Osborne was originally hired to look into the allegations against City Manager Odis Jones but the full report was later completed by a different law firm. The statement from Hutto Mayor Doug Gaul and the city council stated that Osborne’s report was “limited and incomplete, and as a result, its conclusions are not accurate.”

The city goes on to say the completed report determined Jones’ decisions were “just and proper” and that he “did nothing wrong. It is unfortunate that disgruntled employees have behaved in this manner.”

This new development at Hutto City Hall is one in a series of controversial events that have occurred in the past few weeks. Last month, the city’s police chief resigned from his position. Prior to that, Council Member Bettina Jordan resigned at a city council meeting. “I no longer have faith and trust in either the current Council or senior City leadership,” Jordan posted on her Facebook page.

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