Magazine article American Libraries

LC Procurement Officer Sues over Demotion

Magazine article American Libraries

LC Procurement Officer Sues over Demotion

Article excerpt

LC procurement officer sues over demotion

Claiming he was illegally demoted following an investigation into misuse of the Library of Congress's procurement system, the library's former chief procurement officer has filed a $12.25-million lawsuit against the library. Also named in the suit are Librarian of Congress James H. Billington, LC Inspector General John W. Rensbarger, and five other LC officials.

Floyd Hedrick was reassigned from his job as chief of LC's Procurement and Supply Division during a probe into abuses of the Federal Library and Information Network (FEDLINK) (AL, Apr. 1989, p. 279). The complaint, filed in U.S. District Court Feb. 2, charges that Hedrick's reassignment to the Office of the Associate Librarian for Management was a demotion "removing the plaintiff from his supervisory duties, and assigning him to duties previously performed by a person he supervised."

According to the complaint, even though an audit report on FEDLINK conducted by Rensbarger found no cause to dismiss Hedrick, the defendants entered into a conspiracy to force him out of his position using intimidation, threats of investigation, public accusations of wrongdoing, and threats of criminal prosecution.

The suit charges that beginning in the fall of 1988 Billington took steps to remove top-level administrators in order to replace them with appointees who were personal friends or who previously worked for him at the Woodrow Wilson Institute for International Relations. …

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