The settlement is the second large payment by the University in a month to resolve allegations of improper conduct by UH officials.
Late last month, the regents agreed to pay $2.5 million to settle a lawsuit alleging cronyism in the award of a management contract at the $120 million Cancer Research Center of Hawaii project.
The latest settlement, filed in federal court this week, resolves a 2008 suit filed by Judith Vergun, former director of Community Programs at the UH School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology.
Vergun alleged that that she was terminated by UH in 2006 because she had earlier reported possible wrongdoing in a federally-funded university research program.
Eric Ferrer, attorney for Vergun, said the University has agreed to pay the $800,000 settlement. Ferrer and Vergun were unavailable for further comment on the settlement.
The University and its attorney, Lex Smith, did not respond to requests for comment on the Vergun settlement.
In May, U.S. Magistrate-Judge Barry Kurren ruled that the University had been “grossly negligent” in failing to produce records subpoenaed by Vergun in her lawsuit.
Kurren ordered UH to pay for an independent expert’s search of records and computer files for documents relevant to the case. And he ruled that the university must pay legal fees and expenses incurred by Vergun related to the missing records.
University officials repeatedly told Vergun and Ferrer that they had turned over all materials relevant to the lawsuit but numerous new e-mails were later discovered by the plaintiff through subpoenas to Mainland academics involved in Vergun’s work.
Smith said in a court hearing in May that he didn’t know why the records hadn’t been produced by the university.
“I stand in a humble position,” Smith said. “I would tell you if I had a reliable explanation. I do not.”