Westrich loses appeal
Lincoln County Commissioners denied Joseph Westrich’s employment appeal Aug. 7, after an executive session which included Westrich and legal counsel for the county.
Because reporters were not informed the commissioners had come out of executive session, the decision about the appeal was learned when Westrich exited the meeting. In response to a question, he said, “They denied the appeal.” He did not comment further.
Westrich was separated from Lincoln County Communications on July 25, according to County Administrator Carrie Kipfer. His employment appeal was held in executive session at 11 a.m. He left the meeting while commissioners deliberated; Westrich was invited back inside around 11:30 a.m.
According to Kipfer, the motion upheld the July 25 decision to sever the employment relationship with Joseph Westrich as director of communications. Hamilton Meserve made the motion and William Blodgett seconded it. The vote was unanimous, Kipfer said. When reporters asked about the protocol for an executive session ending, Kipfer apologized and said they should have been allowed back in when it ended.
A written decision will be mailed to Westrich within 10 business days confirming his appeal has been denied, Kipfer said. She said this is the commissioners’ final decision, but that Westrich could potentially appeal to Superior Court as part of a civil action.