Columbia mayor, federal officials named in lawsuit

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin and federal officials are accused in a lawsuit of conspiring to fire a local Housing and Urban Development official who alleged the city was misusing federal funds for the city’s low-income residents.

The State of Columbia reports ( ) that the wrongful termination suit filed by Peter Rowe contends HUD officials in Columbia and Washington ignored his persistent efforts to get documentation and explanations about how city officials spent money from three HUD programs. He said his job was threatened.

Rowe was fired by Columbia’s HUD office Nov. 2 after 11 months on the job, still within his one-year probationary period.

Rowe is seeking unspecified actual and punitive damages.

Attorney Allen Nickles is Columbia’s labor lawyer and says Rowe’s allegations will be shown to be unsupportable.


Information from: The State,

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