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State of Idaho Pays $500,000 Settlement in Whistleblower Case

The state of Idaho recently settled a whistleblower lawsuit to the tune of $500,000, stopping the case before it reached federal court.

The suit was filed by James Cryer, a former purchasing agent for the Idaho Department of Labor. He filed the claim in December 2016, alleging the state retaliated against him and fired him for trying to stop state employees from avoiding certain purchasing rules.

The Idaho Department of Labor paid half the settlement, while the Department of Administration’s risk management program paid the other half. The state will also pay Cryer’s legal fees.

Background of the case

Not many details about the case were made public. However, Cryer did name three department employees in his complaint, in addition to the department itself. Those employees were department Director Ken Edmunds, Deputy Director Jay Engstrom and Chief Technology and Security Officer Mike Kalm. Engstrom retired a month after the lawsuit was filed, Edmunds resigned unexpectedly in August 2017 and Kalm left the department in November.

Idaho Governor Brad Little said he encouraged state employees to continue to do their best to address whistleblower policies, along with policies regarding discrimination and harassment. He directed the Division of Human Resources to provide training that will help the various state agencies implement best practices in those particular areas.

If you believe you have evidence regarding misconduct on the part of your employer, contact an experienced attorney at Kardell Law Group to learn how best to proceed with a whistleblower claim.


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