Two Nevada County Consolidated employees currently on medical leave have each filed a $1 million dollar claim against the Fire District. In the Civil Law suit, Fire Captain Brad Amaral and Firefighter Wyatt Howell alleged the Nevada County Consolidated Board made a false report regarding a life threatening incident involving the two at a live-burn training exercise in 2008. The information cited in the tort claim was included in the March 2013 agenda packet for the Nevada County Consolidated Board meeting.The memo, which has e-mails from Howell and others attached was written by board member Keith Grueneberg . It addresses a claim by Howell and his wife that the 2008 incident was never reported to the board. At the March 21st meeting, the district’s legal counsel advised the board to pull the item and allow worker’s comp insurance negotiators to handle it. Nevada County Consolidated Fire Board member Dave Hanson says at their June meeting the board directed staff to forward the claim to their insurance company.
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The District has 45 days to respond to the claim and if no response is received after 6 months the claim is deemed denied and the plaintiffs can file a lawsuit. In the suit, Amaral and Howell claim they have suffered injuries including harm to reputation, shame, humiliation, mortification, hurt feelings, anguish, nervousness, grief, anxiety, worry, shock, and aggravation of PTSD.