When fired ITD Director Pam Lowe filed her initial lawsuit against the state, contending she was fired in part for resisting political pressure against cutting a contract with a big campaign donor to Gov. Butch Otter, there were still a few days left for the state to respond and seek to settle Lowe’s tort claim, which also alleged wrongful firing, sexual discrimination and more. Now, the full 90 days has run out, and there’s been no settlement. That frees Lowe to file an amended complaint in her lawsuit, bringing in all her claims from the tort claim. Kit Coffin, risk management program director for the state, reported that the full 90 days has run, and there has been no change in the status of Lowe’s claim against the state. “Statute allows claimants to deem a claim rejected if there has been no decision within 90 days,” Coffin wrote in an email. “Claimants may file suit after that time. It is not necessary to do so immediately, but they have the right to proceed if they wish. If a suit is filed and served, the state will respond according to the laws and rules applicable to such lawsuits.”
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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