SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, July 20, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — The family of Gary Ott has filed court paperwork to support an Aug. 1 resignation date for the embattled Salt Lake County Recorder.
The proposed resolution follows more than a year of speculation about Ott’s fitness to hold office in light of suspected declines in competency. An investigation also has revealed that Ott’s subordinates have taken over most or all of his duties in his absence from the office.
Ott’s family gained legal guardianship over him earlier this month. His court-appointed guardians are his siblings Martin, Kathy, and Kris, according to a joint statement from Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill and Mayor Ben McAdams’ office.
Ott’s attorney, Mary Corporon, at a news conference told reporters that he “is a good human being, and at one time was a very good Salt Lake County recorder.”
The 3rd District Court filing asks for 12 weeks of severance pay, in Ott’s case, $35,000, from Salt Lake County to be put in a trust as part of the agreement.
That trust would be used for Ott’s care, his family has said. The lawsuit also allows for Ott to remain on the county’s health care plan through Aug. 15.
The lawsuit says that Ott’s family, his attorney and the county have agreed to the proposed court action. Ott’s term in office would otherwise run through 2020.
The joint statement from Gill and McAdams reads in part:
“Mr. Ott served the County well and honorably for many years. The public discussion of his health and well-being has taken its toll not just on Mr. Ott, but on his family and friends, and indeed on all of Salt Lake County. We are hopeful today’s agreement will allow Mr. Ott to move forward more privately into the retirement he deserves.
“Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill, whose office negotiated the agreement on the County’s behalf, added, ‘This agreement represents a significant step toward preserving for Gary the dignity and care he needs. We worked hard to get this agreement in place quickly and efficiently as soon as the family was legally able to negotiate on Gary’s behalf. I want to personally thank Gary’s sisters and brother, Mayor McAdams, and the Salt Lake County Council for coming together to fashion an effective, collaborative, and humanitarian solution to this issue.’
“Although Mr. Ott’s resignation date is certain, given the importance of these issues both to Mr. Ott and to Salt Lake County more generally, the remaining terms of the agreement have been submitted to a court of record for ratification.”