Atlanta agency head reprimanded, but keeps job, after review of spending

By Maggie Lee

Eloisa Klementich will stay on as leader of Atlanta’s development authority, but loses her employment contract after a review of a nonprofit that’s linked to the agency and Klementich herself.

Eloisa Klementich Credit: Invest Atlanta

Eloisa Klementich
Credit: Invest Atlanta

Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms terminated Klementich’s contract yesterday, after a nearly three-hour, closed-door meeting of Invest Atlanta’s board, which included both women.

So Klementich will continue working as president and CEO, but as an at-will employee. Should Klementich later be fired, she wouldn’t be entitled to what’s outlined in a 2017 contract, including the possibility of severance pay worth at least $618,000 in the case of termination without cause.

What triggered the review is Klementich’s role as CFO of Partners for Prosperity, a nonprofit that shares an address with Invest Atlanta. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has reported that Partners for Prosperity spent $40,000 to pay for a controversial trip by then-Mayor Kasim Reed and others to South Africa in 2017. The $40,000 came from a 2017 City Council appropriation of money that Reed had declined to take for a raise.

City Hall received a federal subpoena asking for records on Klementich and Partners for Prosperity in April.

The Invest Atlanta board then voted to “review” Partners for Prosperity.

According to a statement from Bottoms’ office, that review fond no criminal violations of law and no malfeasance in the transaction. But it did determine that Klementich failed to adhere to Partners for Prosperity’s board governance standards.

“Dr. Klementich’s vision and leadership have helped Atlanta attract new businesses and fortify affordable housing in the city. But along with that transformational progress comes an unflinching demand for accountability,” said Bottoms in a written statement.

“Dr. Klementich is aware of the gravity of the Board’s concerns and has been strongly reminded of the expectations of transparency and fiscal stewardship in all matters with Invest Atlanta and its partners,” the statement concludes.

Maggie Lee is a freelance reporter who's been covering Georgia and metro Atlanta government and politics since 2008.

3 replies
  1. Chris Johnston says:

    Mayor Bottoms has insured Klementich’s silence by other means. Let’s watch what Federal and State investigators do, and ignore the City’s attempts to cover its tracks.Report

    Reply
  2. Chris Johnston says:

    Partners for Prosperity is a 501c3 not-for-profit corporation and is required to file an IRS Form 990 tax return if it has income of $25,000 or more. They must file for 2017 and that filing will be public record. It will make for interesting reading and may cause them to lose 501c3 status.Report

    Reply
  3. C Danese says:

    White wash. Council President Moore – can you please get a copy of the investigation that we spend $150000 on? If the city council sits by and let’s Klementich stay as the head of an agency that gives away millions to developers – we deserve to see it.

    Where is Archibong on this issue? Doesn’t she represent the city Council on this board?

    Unbelievable that you have to reprimand a public agency CEO that makes $310000 per year? Reprimand? Is this the new Bottoms standard?

    Unacceptable. We need to make her a or term Mayor.

    Let’s wait for the FBI – that’s how we will know the truth. Then she they can go to prison together.Report

    Reply

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