Kurt Schlicht wants to know: Who will pay for mistakes that may have contributed to Brittany Sue Zimmermann's death?
Schlicht, a Dane County supervisor, has sent a letter to county Corporation Counsel Marcia MacKenzie, asking how the county intends to respond to a lawsuit filed by the parents of UW student Brittany Zimmermann. Zimmermann was killed after her call to the county's 911 Center was improperly handled.
The wrongful death suit was brought Jan. 13 against Dane County, County Executive Kathleen Falk, former 911 dispatcher Rita Gahagan and an unnamed insurance company. Schlicht's letter, signed by seven other county supervisors, asks a number of probing questions, including: "What effect would an adverse judgment have on the county's ability to obtain liability insurance in the future?"
It also asks: "What would be the rationale for extending taxpayer-funded legal assistance to County Executive Kathleen Falk or to 911 employee Rita Gahagan in this case?"
While MacKenzie's office will presumably defend the county, Schlicht suggests that also defending Falk and Gahagan could be a conflict of interest.
"This isn't political," says Schlicht. "I just want to get some answers, and boy, we aren't hearing anything."
The letter is available here (PDF), and was signed by Kurt Schlicht, Jack Martz, Dave Ripp, Bob Salov, Mike Willett, Eileen Bruskewitz, Jerry Jensen, and Dave Wiganowsky.