[Vision2020] UI Settles With Ex-Workers

Art Deco deco at moscow.com
Fri Oct 30 10:05:28 PDT 2009

What we need is legislation that prevents court settlements in cases like this where one party is a public agency from being sealed.  It's taxpayers money.  We should know how much, and how it is being spent, and the frivolities that led to such expenditures.

In this case, it was obvious from the beginning that certain assholes at the university were being just that: assholes protecting a good ol' boy, Gary Maki.  

I want to know how much this malfeasance cost:  the settlement amount, attorney fees, cost of UI staff time, etc.  It's our money, and it is chickenshit of the UI, a public agency, to insist as part of the settlement that its terms be kept secret, and away from the taxpayer's eyes.

If the cost of enough of these settlements were made public, maybe, just maybe, arrogant, good ol' boy/girl behavior could be slowed a bit, and maybe its worst practitioners dismissed from employment.

What is also heartbreaking about this case in the current fiscal downturn is that the money spent on this utter fiasco of illicit favoritism could have been used to save some UI jobs, the services they provide, and prevented the misery and disorganization to families that would have not suffered if UI officials had acted correctly in the first place.

Wayne A. Fox
1009 Karen Lane
PO Box 9421
Moscow, ID  83843

waf at moscow.com
208 882-7975

----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Tom Hansen 
  To: Moscow Vision 2020 
  Sent: Friday, October 30, 2009 5:57 AM
  Subject: [Vision2020] UI Settles With Ex-Workers

  Courtesy of today's (October 30, 2009) Spokesman Review.


  UI settles with ex-workers
  Husband, wife claimed they were punished for reporting on researcher

  The University of Idaho has settled a lawsuit with two former employees
  who claimed they were punished for reporting concerns that a high-profile
  researcher was using university resources to benefit private companies.

  Although the university is publicly funded, the terms of the settlement
  were being kept confidential.

  The UI released a statement saying Kenneth Hass and his wife, Martha Hass,
  "adhered to and followed" the proper procedures in reporting their
  concerns. The statement also said allegations that Kenneth Hass attempted
  to sabotage sensitive research projects were "unfounded."

  The couple worked at the UI's Center for Advanced Microelectronics and
  Biomolecular Research in Post Falls, a research operation formerly led by
  Gary Maki. The center designed and developed microchips used on NASA
  missions, among other projects, and Maki had a history of high-profile

  In 2005, the Hasses told a university auditor that Maki and others at
  CAMBR were improperly using UI resources to benefit two private spinoff
  companies owned by Maki and research colleagues. A UI audit concluded that
  Maki and others deliberately directed public resources to benefit the
  companies - using university equipment, personnel and office space to
  support one firm, and doing company business on university time, among
  other issues.

  As a result, the UI toughened its policies managing conflicts of interest
  between researchers and the for-profit enterprises that arise from their

  Kenneth Hass worked as a professor at the center, and Martha Hass was in
  administrative support before moving to another department and eventually
  leaving the UI. They said they faced retaliation from supervisors and
  administrators for reporting their concerns.

  Kenneth Hass was also the subject of a letter to UI officials - apparently
  authored by Maki, but signed by a NASA official - questioning whether he
  provided sensitive information to unauthorized sources, including "foreign

  The UI said that allegation, as well as others from Maki that Kenneth Hass
  had tried to sabotage CAMBR projects, were unfounded.

  Maki was demoted in 2007 from director of CAMBR to professor there, and he
  retired this month. The Hasses now live in Lewisburg, Pa., where Kenneth
  is a professor at Bucknell University.

  Neither the UI nor the Hasses' attorney would comment further on the case,
  under the conditions of the agreement.


  Seeya at homecoming, Moscow.

  Tom Hansen
  Moscow, Idaho

  "The Pessimist complains about the wind, the Optimist expects it to change
  and the Realist adjusts his sails."

  - Unknown

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