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Michigan township wants whistleblower lawsuit dismissed

It would be wonderful if you could wish it all away any time you face an unpleasant obstacle in life. However, most people understand that this is almost never a viable option. Five board members of Michigan's Clay Township want to make the town's legal obstacles disappear and have asked a court to make it happen.

The informal dismissal request is in response to a whistleblower lawsuit filed by former fire chief, Daryl DuPage, who was terminated from his position in January. Reportedly Mr. DuPage received a separation agreement in December and was given 21 days in which to respond. When he did not, the board terminated him on a 5-2 vote. The two board members who did not vote in favor of the termination were not named in the lawsuit.

The whistleblower suit alleges that Mr. DuPage was unjustly dismissed after he spoke out about the township's fraudulent use of its SAFER grant. At the time, DuPage was also seeking proper overtime pay for firefighters. The news report indicates that overtime pay was a source of contention between firefighters and the Clay Township board.

The lawsuit names five board members, including Supervisor Artie Bryson, who responded to the allegations by saying that they "have no bearing on his termination." The whistleblower suit contains three counts: wrongful discharge, violation of the Michigan Whistleblowers' Protection Act and Fair Labor Standards Act retaliation.

In his whistleblower suit, DuPage is seeking payment of all his lost wages as well as compensatory damages, liquidated damages and additional forms of compensation that a jury trial may determine.

Source: VoiceNews.com, "Clay Township asks court to toss ex-fire chief’s whistleblower lawsuit," Pamela Binsfeld, June 04, 2017

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