Official in Lee resigns

LEESBURG -- Lee County's public works director has resigned from his position, allegedly for engaging in businesses practices that conflicted with his employment with the county.

A number of county officials confirmed Tuesday that William Clark, who has worked with Lee County since Aug. 3, 1998, resigned Monday after meeting with County Administrator Alan Ours.

"Mr. Clark resigned as public works director on the morning of Nov. 9," Ours said Tuesday afternoon. When asked the specifics of Clark's action, Ours said, "I really can't comment on anything further."

County Commission Chairman Ed Duffy confirmed that Clark had resigned from his position, but he said any further comment on the matter should come from Ours.

"The Board of Commissioners voted to place county employees under the direct supervision of the county administrator," Duffy said. "As it would be in all employee matters, this was Mr. Ours' call. But one thing I'm certain of is that Mr. Ours made his decision based on what was best for Lee County."

Attempts Tuesday to reach Clark, whose annual salary had risen to $72,618 at the time of his resignation, were unsuccessful.

A pair of individuals claiming to know the specifics of the incident that led to Clark's resignation, both of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Clark had paid a business owner to place a bid on a piece of equipment that Clark wanted to sell to the county after he had been told that he couldn't conduct such business as a county employee.

Assistant Lee Public Works Director Mike Sistrunk is serving as acting director of the division while county officials consider their next move.

"All I can tell you is that William has resigned from his position," Sistrunk, who has worked with the county for seven years, the last three as assistant public works director, said Tuesday. "He came in and talked with us and told us we're all professionals working in stressful jobs and encouraged us to do what we had to do to keep things running.

"Any other information about Mr. Clark's situation should come from Mr. Ours."