Morton County Emergency Manager Tammy Lapp-Harris has stepped down from her position. Lapp-Harris resigned as the emergency manager on Feb. 28 after making the announcement public on Feb. 19.
Lapp-Harris said she has decided to step as an investigation begins on a sexual harassment complaint she filed again Morton County Sheriff Dave Shipman, which took place in May 2011.
According to the complaint, Lapp-Harris said the harassment began as far back as 1997, and has included attempts by Shipman to fondle or kiss her, and comments directed at her such as “you’re sexy.” Lapp-Harris filed her complaint with the state Labor Department against the county in May 2011, which was then sent to the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The commission, Lapp-Harris said, had a backlog of complaints and would take up to 18 months for an investigation to begin. She received a phone call late in 2012 from the commission that an investigation would be underway.
Her decision to step down comes in light of reducing some of the stress she is currently dealing with in the midst of the investigation.
Morton County Commission Chairman Bruce Strinden said the county has begun the search for an interim emergency manager.
Lapp-Harris has been the emergency manager since 2001, and has been employed by Morton County for 15 years.
-Brian L. Gray