EAST PROVIDENCE — Sources indicated to The East Providence Post former East Providence Building Inspector Albert W. Quattrucci has won his wrongful termination suit against the city and is expected to receive a sizable settlement as well as get his old job back.
Former Rhode Island Supreme Court Chief Judge Frank Williams was the arbiter in the case, ruling on the side of the 73-year-old city resident. Attorney Thomas J. McAndrew represented Mr. Quattrucci throughout the matter.
Mr. Quattrucci, fired in mid-2009 by then City Manager Richard Brown, is expected to receive three years of back pay, including the last with interest. His benefits package will be reinstated. His court and lawyer fees paid. And he will return to work sometime in the next few weeks/months.
A phone call to Mr. Quattrucci’s home late Monday night, July 16, was not returned.
In total, estimates of the package owed to Mr. Quattrucci by the city range anywhere from $200,000 to $500,000 depending on legal fees, especially. It was not immediately known if city was planning to appeal the Judge Williams’ ruling.
Mr. Quattrucci ran afoul of both city and school department leadership back in the summer of 2009 when he attempted to shut down East Providence High School.
Upon his inspection of the six-decade-old facility, Mr. Quattrucci said the high school, with its abundance of asbestos tiles, was unsafe and unhealthy. He was also quoted in several publications, including the Providence Journal, as calling EPHS “a deathtrap.”
Soon after, Mr. Quattrucci was unceremoniously let go by Mr. Brown for what was termed “egregious insubordinate behavior.” Then School Superintendent Mario Cirillo said Mr. Quattrucci’s claims were “exaggerated.”
Some two years later, however, Mr. Quattrucci’s opinion of the state of EPHS was backed up by state health inspectors, who chastised the city for its “patchwork” effort at asbestos abatement.
In response to the health department report and later due to the efforts of the Budget Commission, a facilities improvement plan as well as some $15 million in funding has been put into place to make the necessary repairs at EPHS.