Town manager treated ‘badly,’ she says |

Town manager treated ‘badly,’ she says

Steve Lynn
Vail, CO Colorado
Ann Capela

MINTURN ” A short e-mail may reveal why town officials have been mum on the resignation of Minturn’s former Town Manager, Ann Capela.

“It’s unfortunate that the town chose to treat me so badly. Thank you for trying,” Capela wrote in a July 24 e-mail to Mayor Gordon “Hawkeye” Flaherty.

Capela got a $48,000 settlement after her resignation June 30, according to records requested by the Vail Daily.

In exchange for that sum, a letter of recommendation from Flaherty and housing for 60 days after her resignation, Capela cannot sue the town, according to the settlement agreement.

Capela was put on “extended leave” June 15, but records do not say exactly why or who put Capela on leave.

Town Councilman Bill Burnett thought the Ginn Development Co. annexation process was “getting the best of her” and added that it was “a pretty hard job,” he said.

Ginn wants to build 1,700 homes and condominiums and a private ski resort and golf course on and around Battle Mountain, south of Minturn.

“I thought she was doing a pretty good job,” Burnett said. “They (the Town Council) didn’t think she was doing a good job so we had to get rid of her, I guess.”

Burnett called the matter “private” and declined to reveal details.

Ginn had a positive relationship with Capela, said Cliff Thompson, the company’s local director of communications. Thompson declined to elaborate.

“This is between the town and its manager,” Thompson said. “This has nothing to do with Ginn.”

Michael Gallagher, a former town councilman and who often attends town meetings, thinks the town needed a change.

“I have confidence that the council will find somebody that will take the next step,” Gallagher said.

Burnett commended Capela for remodeling an old, cramped town hall and hiring more town staffers, he said.

Capela guided the town during the Ginn annexation process, bought new computer equipment and improved record keeping, Flaherty wrote in the letter of recommendation for Capela’s future employment.

“Ms. Capela worked hard and put in long hours to accomplish goals that were given to her,” he wrote.

Capela resigned for personal reasons and to pursue other career opportunities, Flaherty said.

“I’m sorry that’s all the information I can release,” Flaherty said.

Capela could not be reached for comment and the settlement agreement says she cannot talk about “the terms and conditions of the settlement as well as negotiations leading to the settlement” except with her attorney and accountant.

Some town council members referred comment to town attorney Allen Christensen, who along with other town council members have not returned messages requesting comment.

The Town Council will talk about a contract for Interim Town Manager Gary Suiter at a meeting Wednesday night. In 2004, Capela replaced Alan Lanning, now city manager of Steamboat Springs.

Staff Writer Steve Lynn can be reached at 748-2931 or

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