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Grundy County HR director says she is staying put

Published: Thursday, May 22, 2014 12:01 p.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, May 22, 2014 9:02 p.m. CDT

MORRIS — Grundy County's Human Resource Director Debra Johnson is not going anywhere. Johnson announced her resignation internally to county board members Wednesday morning, but officially rescinded her resignation this afternoon.

"I just officially rescinded my resignation. I am staying at the County," Johnson wrote in an email sent Thursday afternoon.

Johnson had sent a previous email to board members Wednesday notifying them of her intentions to resign and included her proposed last day. Earlier today, she told the Morris Daily Herald she was reconsidering her resignation and planned on extending the date of her last day.

It was not immediately clear why Johnson decided to stay.

Johnson's tentative resignation came after she was involved in heated public debate about switching the county's insurance brokers.

The county's move to switch brokers from Morris-based Northern Insurance to Rockford-based Williams-Manny was discussed in great length at previous county board and personnel committee meetings throughout the last month.

Johnson initially proposed switching brokers after encountering communication and professionalism issues with Northern's broker, she said.

At this month's county board meeting, a former Northern Insurance broker made accusations about Johnson and other members of the personnel committee, claiming they weren't treating Northern professionally as the county's "broker of record."

He also accused Johnson of rushing the process of switching brokers without giving Northern time to address the board.

Johnson and personnel committee chairwoman Vicki Geiger denied the accusations and presented emails showing Johnson made Northern aware of the county's intentions to look at other brokers as early as March.

The board's latest decision was to delay voting on the broker change to allow for further research.

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