Joe Nelson, Staff Writer
Posted: 05/26/2010 06:30:04 PM PDT
Former San Bernardino County Administrative Officer Mark Uffer filed a lawsuit against the county on Wednesday alleging whistleblower retaliation for cooperating in an ongoing corruption probe with state and local prosecutors.
Uffer alleges his termination occurred one week after he met with the Grand Jury to discuss questionable use of county-issued credit cards by Mark Kirk, chief of staff for Supervisor Gary Ovitt, and Brian Johsz, Ovitt’s district director.
Uffer also prepared a list of questions for the Grand Jury to use in their questioning of Kirk and Supervisor Paul Biane, who has been implicated in the county scandal involving its controversial $102 million legal settlement with Rancho Cucamonga developer Colonies Partners LP in November 2006.
Prosecutors allege the settlement was tainted by bribery and extortion.
Neither Biane nor Colonies co-managing partners Jeff Burum and Dan Richards have been been charged with any crimes.
The lawsuit claims Uffer’s termination was “arbitrary and capricious” because Uffer complained about numerous conflicts of interest, policy violations and illegal acts occurring in county government.
“Mark H. Uffer was the subject of a well-orchestrated campaign that had designs on forcing him to resign and when that could not be achieved, terminated his employment,” according to the lawsuit.
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