Wausau City Ethics Board votes on complaint against alderperson

Published: Jan. 12, 2022 at 9:32 PM CST
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - The City of Wausau Ethics Board met to discuss how to proceed on a complaint against a City Alderperson Wednesday.

Debra Ryan accused Marathon County Supervisor William Harris of interfering with discussions about Wausau’s “Community for All” diversity resolution by offering free legal advice and undermining City Attorney Anne Jacobson. She then allegedly went to Harris’s employer and a colleague to make the accusation.

Harris filed a formal complaint against Ryan denying all charges. The complaint was notarized and included two affidavits confirming Ryan’s alleged actions.

Outside counsel notified the three voting board members that the vote only had the power to decide if an investigation would take place. All subsequent actions will have to be decided in upcoming meetings.

“That’s pretty much what I wanted to do with that. I don’t want to have it in front of me and not look at it and not hear from the parties involved. So at this point we’re just going to do an investigation, and I agree with that,” said Board Vice-Chair Doug Hosler.

Ryan is to be notified of the Board’s decision and presented with a copy of Harris’s complaint.

It was revealed at the meeting that Board Chair Mary Thao recently resigned for reasons unknown. Board member Calvin Dexter recused himself from the vote because of an association with Harris in regard to his bid for a Marathon County Circuit Court Judge race.

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