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I just got a quick update on the case of Rodger Hartnett, the former San Diego County Office of Education employee who claims he was fired for complaining that one firm, Stutz Artiano Shinoff & Holtz, received a disproportionate share of legal work “based on personal relationships” in the office rather than merit. Hartnett is now also seeking nearly $450,000 in legal fees along with his job and back pay.

The case is now being appealed by the County Office after a Superior Court judge ruled that Hartnett was entitled to his job and back pay because the agency failed to investigate his claims; the employer argues that Hartnett was fired for negligence, insubordination and dishonesty, including discussing a confidential file with an outside attorney and lying about it. You can read more about some of the allegations behind this complex case here and here.

EMILY ALPERT

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