Investigative report that led to firing of Gail Wilcox cost SLO County $80,000

The county spent close to $80,000 for the investigative report that led to the ousting of Assistant County Administrator Gail Wilcox, according to its Human Relations Department.

The final tally was $79,183.61, according to Tami Douglas-Schatz, Human Resources Director.

By contrast, the county's investigation into possible misconduct by Sheriff Pat Hedges last year cost taxpayers $116,579.

County Supervisors hired Robertson on May 10, as the personal behavior of Wilcox and her boss, County Administrative Officer David Edge, began to engulf the administrative office.

Robertson is a partner in the Oakland law firm of Fitzgerald, Abbott & Beardsley.

Wilcox accused Edge of sexual misconduct harassment on May 5, and the board placed him on administrative leave two days later. Three days after that, they placed Wilcox on leave, and hired Robertson to investigate her.

They fired Edge May 19. Wilcox sued him and the county for alleged sexual harassment on June 15. That suit is pending.

Robertson gave the county her report on July 2, and supervisors fired Wilcox on July 14.

Both Wilcox’s suit and Robertson’s report are full of lurid details alleging inappropriate behavior by both Wilcox and Edge.

Supervisors have hired veteran administrator Jim Grant to run the county through December 2010, as they seek a permanent replacement for Edge.