Retaliation rate

Things went south for Vicki Korsak after she spoke up about questionable property tax rates for elected officials

Months after five Sacramento County Assessor’s Office employees publicly alleged malfeasance within the office, one confirmed she’s since lost her job.

Vicki Korsak, a 63-year-old former associate real property appraiser, was originally slated for a June 12 arbitration hearing following two unpaid suspensions and write-ups that she claims were leveled as retaliation for coming forward (read “Assessed damages,” May 31, 2018).

Korsak and four coworkers made numerous allegations, including that former Assessor Kathleen Kelleher received unfairly low property tax bills. This sparked an investigation by a local law firm, which cleared county officials of wrongdoing days before interim Assessor Christina Wynn decisively won re-election.

Another employee who came forward, Rick Reeve, said last spring that he and two others, Seth Jarrett-Lee and Tamara Sturgis, were also getting write-ups. The fifth employee, Scott Graves, told SN&R he now works in Nevada County. Korsak confirmed via email she was fired in November. Following SN&R’s article, her hearing was rescheduled to January, though Korsak said she later withdrew her arbitration.

“I did not want to subject myself to a flawed system which is blatantly against the employee and denies an employee any legal redress,” she wrote. “The last couple of years have been brutal and injurious to me. … For now, I am resting and recovering. I am still numb.”

Korsak added she’d still like to see change at the assessor’s office.

A county spokesperson didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Korsak and the others made approximately 77 allegations, with the law firm finding most to be without merit. The county also closed two investigations of its own without conclusions of wrongdoing.