GALLOWAY TOWNSHIP —- The township agreed to settle litigation with its former clerk Lisa Tilton on Tuesday night, but township officials refused to say how much money she stands to receive or any other terms.
The Township Council signed off on the resolution for the settlement and general release agreement with a 6-0 vote, with Councilman Jim McElwee abstaining. The vote came following an executive session that discussed the Tilton litigation.
The voted-on resolution generally allowed township officials to approve a settlement, which the document did not specify.
"The only thing we can say is there is a settlement," said township attorney Michael J. Fitzgerald, who did not disclose the details of the settlement. He said that the document will be sent to the various parties in the litigation for their final approval.
Mayor Don Purdy acknowledged after the meeting that the settlement included a cash component, but he would not specify the amount or describe any other settlement terms. He said he was "just happy the township is moving forward."
Tilton, contacted Tuesday night, referred questions regarding the terms of the settlement and who is party to it to her attorney, Steven R. Srenaski. He could not be reached.
Tilton worked for Galloway Township for about 10 years and served as clerk for three years. She resigned in October 2011 and later filed tort claims listing more than $6 million in damages.
The claim cited improper termination, sexual harassment and the wrongful release of her personal information in Open Public Meetings Act requests. The subsequent suit listed 27 counts, seeking damages, back pay and her reinstatement to the township clerk's position.
The majority of the counts pertained to former Township Manager Stephen Bonanni, who Tilton claimed sexually harassed her, kept her from speaking to council and forced her resignation from the Planning Board.
Current Clerk T.C. Kay, former Clerk Karen Bacon and former Solicitor Mike Blee were also named for releasing her personal information. Others, including Purdy, Deputy Mayor Tony Coppola, Tom Bassford, Jim Gorman, Whitney Ullman and Brian Tyrrell, were named for not stopping the allegedly illegal acts.
Since her litigation, Tilton has tried to find employment elsewhere. She lost out in Middle Township, where emails subsequently revealed township officials were concerned about hiring her because of her ongoing litigation. She has since filed a tort claim there, reserving her right to litigation.
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