West Fargo commissioner says budget differences contributing factor in staff departures

(Fargo, ND) -- A West Fargo City Commissioner is talking about one of the big issues that he says was a contributing factor in recent high-profile departures at city hall. 

"What started it was the budget. I wasn't comfortable and part of the budget quite honestly was this pay scale we are about ready to talk about. I wanted that cut and I wanted a couple of other things cut and we disagreed I guess first of all how to get there," said Mark Simmons.

Simmons says he believes his focus on the budget is part of what led former City Manager Tina Fisk to walk out of a city commission meeting, and ultimately her resignation. 

That was followed by the departures of HR Director Jenna Wilm and two other department heads.  

Simmons says Fisk and Wilm are "good people" and wanted the best for the city, but says their opinions differed from his on how best to move the city forward. 

Mayor Bernie Dardis has not yet responded to a request from the news department at WDAY Radio Now for an interview to discuss the recent staff departures at city hall, but he has agreed to appear on The Jay Thomas Show on WDAY AM 970 and FM 93.1 Tuesday, May 9th at 3:05 p.m.