Judge: Weld County must release investigative report on commissioner to newspaper

The Greeley Tribune: Weld District Court Judge Todd Taylor on Thursday ruled complaints against Weld County Commissioner Sean Conway did not constitute sexual harassment, as Conway’s actions did not create a hostile work environment.

As a result, Weld County is required to provide a copy of an investigative report relating to Conway’s actions to The Greeley Tribune.

An investigative report compiled by Mountain States Employers Council and spurred by a Nov. 23 complaint from an employee alleging Conway yelled and cursed at her during a phone call was discussed Feb. 13 during a Board of Weld County Commissioners executive session.

The Tribune filed a Colorado Open Records Act request with the county seeking the release of the report. In response, the county filed a petition in Weld District Court seeking judicial review.

County attorney Bruce Barker said county officials could not determine whether the report was releasable, as they could not determine whether the complaints against Conway constituted the creation of a hostile work environment for employees.

The exemption falls under open records law, which says investigative reports related to sexual harassment — of which a hostile work environment is a subset — cannot be released. For Conway, who was not able to comment on the investigation or impending legal action, the innuendo was painful.

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