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Hastings fire chief Mike Schutt is on paid leave pending an investigation after a verbal complaint was made against him, Hastings city officials said.

Schutt, who has been the chief and EMS director since 2007, was put on paid administrative leave Aug. 30. The complaint was made in May, according to Melanie Mesko Lee, Hastings city administrator.

Mesko Lee said she couldn’t reveal details of the complaint or the investigation. Minnesota law requires that public agencies release the existence and status of complaints but bars the release of detail unless the investigation is complete and then only if it results in disciplinary action.

“I’m not aware of any criminal aspects of it. It’s been personnel-policy focused,” Mesko Lee said.

An outside agency is conducting the investigation, she said.

“We’re working to move this along in a timely manner,” Mesko Lee said.

Schutt has been a paid on-call firefighter since 1985 and a full-time firefighter in 1996.

John Townsend, assistant fire and EMS director and fire marshal, is currently taking on Schutt’s duties.

Erin Adler • 612-673-1781