Pershing County Economic Development Authority Executive Director Elaine Pommereng resigned her position March 30, says Karen Wesner, assistant to the county commissioners.
But Pommereng says she was "terminated without cause." The board told her, she says, it had decided to "go in another direction."
"We are looking at restructuring the Authority," says Lynn Christofferson, chairwoman of the board. "We are not interviewing to fill the position at this time," she says.
However, the board is advertising for an administrative assistant. And that, says Pommereng, is simply a stopgap measure until things cool down, and the board can appoint a pre-selected replacement.
Meanwhile, the Authority is moving into a new office on Main Street next to the Chamber of Commerce.
Was Pommereng's firing the result of the Far West Technology debacle?
"It could have had something to do with it," says the former director, "but it's not the whole reason."
"Not a factor," says Commissioner Dave Ayoob. Both the development and chamber leadership are part time positions. The county hopes to pool its resources, he says, to consolidate both into a single full time job.
Looking back over her six and a half years in the job, Pommereng recalls how she came on board to set up an independent agency so that the county could secede from the Tri-county Development Authority (Pershing-Lander-Humboldt).
"We felt we could better present our own county," she says.
And each year after that, Pommereng says she accomplished all the criteria required to qualify for the next year's grant.
What does Pommereng plan to do next?
"I'll put in for the new position," she says. "My concern is for the good of Lovelock."