Sun Valley Fire Chief Quits While Citizens Wait for Investigation Results


While the City of Sun Valley anxiously awaits the findings of a forensic audit investigating potential fraud at their City Hall, Sun Valley's fire chief has submitted his resignation. The wife and son of former Fire Chief Jeff Carnes, who also worked in the department, also resigned. Carnes had been with the department for 38 years.

This morning's Idaho Mountain Express reports that Carnes declined to give a reason as to why he quit, while Sun Valley Mayor Dewayne Briscoe said the resignation was "a personnel matter."

"I have several state and federal law restraints," said Briscoe.

But Briscoe has much more to consider than disclosing Carnes' reason for resigning. In August, Briscoe conceded the audit revealed that his city was not in compliance with many federal and state labor laws.

The audit was triggered by a string of troubling incidents, including break-ins at the Sun Valley fire station, stolen and/or erased files, resignations by city staff, city employees placed on administrative leave, lawsuits against the city, and countersuits filed by the city.

The Mountain Express reports that Carnes and his wife were paid approximately $112,400 during their administrative leave.

In October, Briscoe said he was conducting what he called private "name-clearing" hearings with city employees who had been singled out in the investigation.