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Gov't scientist fired over Emails?

U.S. water management agency accuses biologist of distributing sensitive information; scientist insists his actions were above board

Kirsten Weir
The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation is attempting to fire biologist Charles (Rex) Wahl, charging he shared sensitive information with environmental groups and other government agencies in a deliberate attempt to undermine Reclamation projects. Both Wahl and the Bureau of Reclamation have declined to speak to the press while the decision is pending. At issue are Emails Wahl sent while an Environmental Specialist in Reclamation's Yuma, Arizona office. His supervisors discovered the messages -- addressed to individuals at the Corps of Engineers, the Fish and Wildlife Service, and the nonprofit group Environmental Defense -- on Wahl's computer after he transferred from Yuma to Albuquerque last May.Wahl has been on paid administrative leave since September, when Reclamation issued the first notice of their proposal to dismiss him. The notice charged Wahl with releasing unauthorized information, among other offenses. In late December, after receiving a response from Wahl defending himself, Reclamation...

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