Assistant city manager on leave pending investigation into training seminar

An Austin assistant city manager is on administrative leave pending an investigation into a controversial training titled Women Leading in Government.

Thursday Assistant City Manager Anthony Snipes was placed on administrative leave. Snipes is said to have organized the seminar and had the opportunity to hear the presentation before.

City Manager Marc Ott says an investigation is underway into what he describes as a serious personnel issue and that the remarks are not reflective of the city's culture. It's not clear how long the investigation will last or what may come of it.

"I do think there are a lot of people who still have a lot of questions and we can use this time to understand how the training came to be," said Ellen Troxclair, District 8 councilmember.

Troxclair says she was shocked and disappointed. Her feelings are shared by her colleagues.

City leaders say Jonathan Allen suggested women don't like finances, should be addressed differently than men and ask more questions. Allen, in a statement, says many comments were taken out of context.

As the investigation moves forward Troxclair hopes this will serve as a learning opportunity.

"I understand there's going to be another diversity training for city staff and because this kind of training is what got us into this situation in the first place I hope we can focus on the different things we bring to the table instead of how our differences stereotype us," said Troxclair.

The diversity training is scheduled for Monday at 10:30 in council chambers.


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