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Whistleblower complaint rejected

The whistleblower complaint filed with the State Auditor’s Office against two Bainbridge Island officials has been dismissed.

Kim Hendrickson, former secretary/chief examiner of the civil service commission filed the 15-page whistleblower complaint, with accompanying 268 pages of attachments, in late January.

At the time, then city manager Brenda Bauer called the complaint “factually and legally incorrect” citing that Hendrickson wasn’t even a city employee, rather, a private contractor.

Hendrickson declined to comment at length on the dismissal when contacted by the Review.

Hendrickson’s complaint alleged that she brought concerns to the city manager regarding violations within the police department and the civil service commission in January 2011. What followed, Hendrickson claimed, was a series of unnoticed meetings violating the state’s Open Public Meetings Act, and ultimately her firing in August 2011.

In a Feb. 21 letter to Hendrickson and her lawyer, Jan M. Jutte, director of legal affairs with the State Auditor’s Office, said that Hendrickson’s concerns were outside the auditor’s authority.

She added that the auditor’s office has no authority to “examine compliance with civil service or local government whistleblower laws.”

Jutte also noted that Hendrickson’s concerns with the state’s Open Public Meeting’s Act had previously been addressed by the state’s assistant attorney general Tim Ford.

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