- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A District Court judge has dismissed several claims from a former top D.C. contracting officer who sued the city saying he was fired after he complained of improprieties in the award of a $38 million contract to run the D.C. Lottery.

Eric W. Payne filed a five-count lawsuit against the city, accusing Chief Financial Officer Natwar M. Gandhi of retaliating against him when he claimed that elected officials, including then-Council Chair Vincent C. Gray, improperly intervened to thwart the selection of a vendor to run the city’s lottery contract in 2008.

After making the complaints, Mr. Payne was reassigned to lesser duties and ultimately fired in 2009. The lottery contract was rebid and was the subject of a bitter and protracted dispute.

An investigation into the procurement process by the city’s Office of the Inspector General is ongoing, an agency spokesman said Wednesday.

Though the court dismissed two counts filed by Mr. Payne and dismissed Mr. Gandhi as a defendant in two others, it allowed him to proceed with three claims against the city.

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