Hashim Yonis, a candidate for Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board commissioner and a former Park District employee, was accused in July of illegally taking money. In August, he was terminated for violation of a number of civil service rules, including “criminal or dishonest conduct unbecoming to a public employee” and “misappropriation of City property, funds or money.” [See PDF below for full investigative report and decisions.] In a settlement agreement announced today, Yonis agreed never to apply for a position with the Park Board. In the agreement, he was allowed to turn his termination into a resignation. Here’s the text of the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board statement:
In July, 2013, a citizen complained to a park board employee that Hashim Yonis was renting out Currie Park field and questioned where the rental money was going. An internal investigation was conducted resulting in a finding that Mr. Yonis had violated numerous civil service rules constituting just cause for his termination. On August 23, 2013, Mr. Yonis was terminated from employment with the Park Board.
On August 27, 2013, Mr. Yonis appealed his termination through the Minneapolis Civil Service Commission. A civil service hearing on Mr. Yonis’s appeal was scheduled to be held on October 15, 2013. The day before the hearing, Mr. Yonis, through his attorney, asked the Park Board if it would consider amending his termination to a resignation if he dropped his appeal.
After consultation with Park Board counsel, the Superintendent determined that it was in the best interest of the Park Board to amend Mr. Yonis’ termination to a resignation on the following conditions:
- He waive his right to appeal his termination;
- He never apply or reapply for a position with the Park Board;
- He waive his rights, if any, to sue the Park Board for any claim arising out of his employment with the Park Board; and
- That he not disparage the Park Board, its commissioners or employees relative to the investigation into employment misconduct and his subsequent termination.
Mr. Yonis signed the settlement agreement on October 21, 2013. Although he has fifteen days (i.e. until November 5th) to rescind the waiver of any lawsuits, the dispute over his termination is concluded. The settlement agreement is public, as is the investigation into the complaint against Mr. Yonis. A copy of the settlement agreement is attached.
While Yonis cannot apply for a paid job with the Park Board, he apparently can continue to run for election to the governing body as a commissioner of the Park Board.
See attached PDFs for full text of settlement agreement, and for the findings of the Park District investigation that led to firing Yonis.