SPOKANE, Wash. — The Spokane Board of Health will meet Thursday to vote on Dr. Bob Lutz’s fate as county health officer.
The Spokane Regional Health District has largely refused to answer questions about Lutz’s status, but more information – largely made available through public records requests – has surfaced throughout the past week that gives a timeline of events.
Last week, the board convened during an executive session and discussed disciplining Lutz. The reason for that discipline has not been made public, but an investigation by 4 News Now showed the board left that meeting with the understanding that he would be disciplined in writing, but not fired.
Administrative Officer Amelia Clark asked Lutz to submit his resignation shortly after that executive session, but on Friday, the health district inaccurately stated in a release that it was the board that made that request.
Board member Breean Beggs raised concerns about the release, noting to Clark that it would likely be illegal under the Open Public Meetings Act for the board to make a decision during executive session, which again, they did not do.
The only way for the health board to formally terminate Lutz is to do so through a vote during a public meeting. That meeting is set for 3 p.m. and will allow public comment through written testimony, which must be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org by 11 a.m.
The health district has also identified a possible interim health officer – Dr. Mary Bergum. Should the board vote to terminate Lutz, they will then consider voting on moving her into the position.
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