AP NEWS
Click to copy
Click to copy

The Latest: Grand Canyon superintendent not back in job

March 5, 2019

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — The Latest on the Grand Canyon superintendent (all times local):

5 p.m.

An attorney for the Grand Canyon superintendent says he advised her not to return immediately to her job overseeing the national park.

Christine Lehnertz was reassigned in October while investigators from the Interior Department’s Office of Inspector General looked into allegations she created a hostile work environment and wasted park resources.

The office released a report Tuesday outlining the allegations, about a month after she was cleared in the investigation.

Lehnertz had been expected to return to the Grand Canyon before its Feb. 26 centennial. But her attorney, Kevin Evans, advised her not to because of what he says are continued, baseless accusations against top management.

Evans says he’s negotiating with the National Park Service on Lehnertz’s employment status but would not go into detail.

Meanwhile, she’s working in the agency’s regional office in Denver.

2 p.m.

The superintendent at Grand Canyon National Park had been investigated for disciplinary action, and over allegations she created a hostile work environment and wasted park resources.

The park announced last month that the investigation by the Interior Department’s Office of Inspector General exonerated Christine Lehnertz.

The allegations were made public Tuesday when the office released its report.

It found Lehnertz rightfully proposed a 1-day suspension for a senior official who repeatedly failed to follow her instructions. It also found no evidence she bullied or retaliated against male leaders or that she wasted nearly $180,000 to renovate a park residence to recruit a deputy superintendent.

Lehnertz had been reassigned during the investigation and was expected to return to the Grand Canyon soon after being cleared.

A park spokeswoman said Tuesday plans have changed but wouldn’t elaborate.

All contents © copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.