The city of Los Angeles will pay $800,000 to settle a lawsuit brought by a veteran fire marshal who was transferred out of his job after he clashed with inspectors in his department and the fire union sought his removal.
The City Council voted 10 to 0 without discussion Wednesday to approve the settlement payment.
In his 2017 lawsuit, former Fire Marshal John Vidovich alleged that Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas, Mayor Eric Garcetti and aides to the mayor pushed him out at the behest of United Firefighters of Los Angeles City Local 112 after Vidovich exposed “illegal and fraudulent acts” by inspectors in his bureau.
Attorneys for the city defended Vidovich’s transfer, arguing in court filings seeking to dismiss the case that tensions between the fire marshal and those reporting to him were disrupting the department.
He testified in his deposition that he found fire inspectors falsifying and destroying records, and demanding unnecessary overtime.