CRC has no development employees after wave of resignations

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By Karen Kennedy

Mayor Jim Brainard has confirmed that both Les Olds, the embattled former executive director of the Carmel Redevelopment Commission, and operations manager Matt Worthley have both resigned effective Oct. 17.

With the resignations, the CRC currently has no other employees to manage its operations, developments or TIF revenues. The only remaining employee is marketing and promotions manager Megan McVicker.

“We should thank Les Olds for his many contributions to the planning and beautiful architecture in the Arts and Design District and City Center,” Brainard said.

Technically, Olds was already off the job after the council effectively fired Olds by refusing to renew his contract in August, citing inconsistent record keeping. However, Olds had continued to attend meetings and was, in essence, working as an unpaid consultant.
In its September meeting, the Carmel City Center Community Development Corp. could have approved a contract to hire Olds and loan him back to the CRC. Instead city councilor and 4CDC board member Ron Carter recommended postponing the contract pending advice from a lawyer.“I think it’s best that Les is not a department head,” said City Councilor Luci Snyder, citing the findings of a recent audit report on the CRC that was conducted by the State Board of Accounts.

“But I think he might have been valuable as an architectural consultant,” Snyder said.
Snyder, however, had praise for Worthley. “He did the absolute best job he could, under the circumstances. He was quick to respond to requests for information and was very helpful in the transition process.”

Olds declined to comment for this story. Worthley said that he “plans to pursue other opportunities,” but he declined to elaborate on his future plans or the reasons behind his departure.

4CDC board president resigns

Jessica Kruse, the newly appointed president of the 4CDC, also resigned Oct. 18 in an unrelated turn of events.

City Councilor and 4CDC board member Ron Carter wanted to emphasize that Kruse’s resignation wasn’t tied to those at the CRC.

“It was more work for her than she was prepared to take on,” Carter said, noting that Kruse had indicated to him that she planned to resign about 4 weeks prior.

“She found that the workload associated with the 4CDC was greater than expected, and it was interfering with her performance at her full-time job,” city spokeswoman Nancy Heck said in a statement.

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