Council releases tapes of housing talk |

Council releases tapes of housing talk

ASPEN ” Aspen City Hall on Thursday released the audio tapes of two closed-door meetings in which the City Council gave its nod to plan to offer a city official housing for the rest of his life in order to keep him on staff.

The council agreed to release the tapes in another closed-door session, held earlier this week, after The Aspen Times requested the recordings through its attorney.

During the sessions, the council agreed to a deal that allows Public Works Director Phil Overeynder to rent city-owned housing for the rest of his life if he fulfills the terms of an employment contract.

John Worcester, city attorney, said he stands by the decision to hold the discussions about the housing deal in private and contends the council did not violate the state’s open-meetings law in doing so.

“By doing your job, you made it controversial,” he said. “Protecting the privacy rights of Phil is moot.”

Overeynder attempted to resign last month to take a similiar job in California that paid more, offered better benefits and was an affordable locale in which to retire.

For details of the content of the tapes released Thursday, see Friday’s Aspen Times.

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