Ousted Metra CEO testifies before RTA Board

Ousted Metra CEO Alex Clifford’s testimony today before the RTA Board was riveting, with numerous mentions of Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan.

Clifford said leaving Metra with a controversial severance deal was never what he wanted.

Clifford was calm and collected in his first public comments since last week’s release of his bombshell memo from April 3.

“I stand behind my April 3 memo,” Clifford said.  “I have nothing to hide.”

The former Metra CEO made it clear that he did not leave by choice.

Clifford reiterated to the RTA Board many points made in his 8-page memo — that he was forced out for resisting the demands of Speaker Madigan.  The powerful Democrat allegedly demanded a raise for a particular employee and the hiring of another.  Clifford said he did neither.

Metra’s attorney and board chairman listened intently and took notes during Clifford’s testimony, which touched upon his $718,000 severance package and confidentiality provision.

The confidentiality provision limited what Clifford could say during today’s testimony.

According to the Chicago Tribune, the employee for whom Speaker Madigan requested a raise left Metra last year and was recently hired for a state job after a recommendation from Madigan.

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