Veteran meteorologist Kurt Schmitz has filed a lawsuit against WTVM, his former employer, for breach of contract. Schmitz, 55, was fired in March after serving as the ABC-affiliate’s chief meteorologist for 22 years.
“A contract is a contract and I was executing my part in good faith throughout,” Schmitz explained on Saturday to his Facebook fans, who have started a “Bring Back Kurt Schmitz to WTVM” campaign. “I’d be happy just to be back in my office again making and delivering forecasts, but if that doesn’t happen there are other ways to make good. And that’s what I hope to achieve.”
Schmitz has been outspoken about his dismissal since it occurred. In March, he told the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer that WTVM was trying to position his departure as a resignation but said emphatically that “that is not the case.”
The lawsuit hinges on whether Schmitz resigned or was fired and also on the contract renewal that he says he signed in September, which would extend his employment until February 2014.
According to the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, Schmitz is also alleging that WTVM general manager Lee Brantley caused him emotional distress “intentionally and with malice.”
Schmitz said on Facebook that he and his attorney “made several overtures” to WTVM “so that the situation could come to an amicable end. They were all rejected, and the lawsuit is the result.”