LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - The money is on its way back into the city coffers in Longview, but the controversy surrounding the city's plan to bring rocker Ted Nugent remains. In e-mails uncovered by the Texas Public Information Act, we learned Longview employees were reprimanded and an additional payment was made beyond the $16,250 initially told by the city.
That money is being donated to the city through a group called Longview Patriots, who said they raised the amount of the money lost through offering different perks for people or businesses that buy into the event.
"We don't make any excuses about that, we made mistakes," said Longview City Manager David Willard.
City employee e-mails show the city manager was unaware of the depth of negotiations until a contract was about to be sent.
"I told them we were not going to proceed and let's shut it down," Willard said. "And I immediately called the mayor and he concurred with me on that and that was when we ended the negotiations on our part with Mr. Nugent and his people."
Initially the city said they paid $16,250 in the agreement to Ted Nugent's booking agent, but the city said they also agreed to make an additional payment of $1,750 to the promoter who was hired to work on the city's behalf for the event.
When the decision was made to cut Nugent loose, the reaction did not go over quietly at city hall.
The e-mail trail obtained by KLTV also sheds light on reprimands issued to city staff as a response to the Nugent controversy.
The city's director of community services received a written and verbal reprimand, while the Maude Cobb Complex Manager and city public information officer both received verbal reprimands.
"Those three employees were reprimanded for poor judgment and poor communication," Willard said. "They were reprimanded at the levels that I as a city manager felt appropriate for what had been done."
Willard also said the responsibility of the Maude Cobb Complex would be removed from the community services department and instead report directly to the city manager's office.