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Clearwater Paper ordered to pay $235,000 to whistleblower

BOISE – A federal judge has ordered Clearwater Paper Corp. to pay a former employee $235,000 after ruling the company fired him for filing a report with a federal agency about unsafe working conditions at the company’s sawmill in Lewiston, Idaho.

The company fired Anthony Tenny in 2010 less than a month after an Occupational Safety & Health Administration inspection of the sawmill prompted by Tenny’s complaint about high wood dust levels.

Tenny then filed a whistleblower complaint with OSHA, and the U.S. Department of Labor filed a lawsuit in 2013.

The Spokane-based company says Tenny was fired for insubordination. But U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill called that explanation “preposterous.”

Clearwater Paper told the Idaho Statesman it is reviewing the ruling and is assessing whether to appeal.


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