Brown’s pay docked for office romance
The head of the Colorado Department of Local Affairs still has the confidence of Gov. John Hickenlooper, after he confessed to a romantic relationship with his secretary.
Reeves Brown, a Grand Junction Republican picked by just-elected Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, three years ago to head the Department of Local Affairs, saw his salary of $148,920 reduced by 2 percent as a result.
He won’t be eligible for any salary increase for a year and his base salary will remain 2 percent below that of his fellow Cabinet members.
The sanction “was very appropriate,” Brown said Friday in Grand Junction, where he maintains an office in the state office building.
He also has a residence in the city and he commutes regularly to Denver. “There are consequences to our actions,” he said.
Brown approached the governor and his chief of staff, Roxane White, with the confession during the time Hickenlooper was in the hospital being treated for an ailing hip.
White and the Office of Personnel conducted what White said was a full investigation that included interviews with the senior staff of the Department of Local Affairs about whether Brown would continue to be able to lead the department.
Brown headed Club 20, the Western Slope advocacy organization, at the time he was appointed to head Local Affairs, which administers grants and programs that aid local governments in providing affordable housing, emergency management, tax administration and other issues.
“I felt reassured” after those conversations that Brown’s ability to head the department wasn’t tarnished, White said.
White also interviewed the secretary, Dianne Rogers, and ruled out the possibility of sexual harassment in the case, White said.
Rogers now works for the Colorado Department of Transportation.
The romantic relationship began while Brown was in the process of getting a divorce, which became final in May, and Brown said he was remiss in failing to bring it to his boss’ attention six months earlier than he did in September.
Brown plans to attend, on his own time, employment practices classes conducted by the Mountain States Employers Council.