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John Curp, temporary city manager, is leaving Cincinnati employment with a $400k payout

Michael Keating

Outgoing Interim Cincinnati City Manager John Curp is leaving city employment and taking a sizable severance payment with him.

The contract council approved in January promised Curp a senior management level position making a certain amount of money or a lump sum payment; he was one of two finalists for the job.

Newly confirmed City Manager Sheryl Long announced Friday Curp will not have a new city job.

“A settlement was reached that all parties recognize is in the best interest of the city,” Long said in a memo to the mayor and members of council. “Mr. Curp will continue to be available as a resource for the city.”

Curp will leave with a total payout of $436,282.59:

  • $404,444.58 is equivalent to the salary Curp would have received through July 30, 2024, if he had been offered a position with a salary of at least 75% his salary as Interim City Manager, as well as the cost of health insurance coverage for six months
  • $31,838.01 for unused vacation time (176.5 hours) and sick time (66 hours).

Curp was a partner at the law firm Blank Rome until he left to become interim city manager in mid-January. Mayor Aftab Pureval appointed him to that position when Paula Boggs Muething announced her resignation.

"I'm giving up a lucrative law practice to step back into government," Curp told council in January. "And giving that up, from my personal perspective, required that there be a commitment to me to provide me some time to accommodate a career if things went different ways."

Council approved Curp’s contract January 5, with an initial salary of about $265,000 a year. That increased to about $273,000 a year when council approved the city budget in June. Long’s salary is about $287,000 a year.

Curp served as city solicitor from 2008 to 2014, serving under Mark Mallory; he was demoted about month into Mayor John Cranley's term, then left shortly after.

Becca Costello grew up in Williamsburg and Batavia (in Clermont County) listening to WVXU. Before joining the WVXU newsroom, she worked in public radio & TV journalism in Bloomington, Indiana and Lincoln, Nebraska. Becca has earned numerous awards for her reporting, including from local chapters of the Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists, and contributed to regional and national Murrow Award winners. Becca has a master's degree in journalism from Indiana University and a bachelor's degree from Cincinnati Christian University. Becca's dog Cincy (named for the city they once again call home) is even more anxious than she is.