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PEMBROKE, NC (AP) — The Lumbee Supreme Court has ruled that the tribal chairman didn’t have the authority to hire the tribe’s chief administrator under the terms negotiated in her contract.

The Fayetteville Observer reported that the court sided last week with the Tribal Council in the case that involved Tribal Chairman Purnell Swett.

Council member say they agreed to a one-year contract for the administrator. They later learned that the contract included an automatic two-year extension unless the administrator was notified by the end of her term.

The case went to the Supreme Court after Swett challenged the council’s authority to fire the administrator, Rose Marie Lowry-Townsend, who ended her first year of working with the tribe on Friday.

Information from: The Fayetteville Observer, http://www.fayobserver.com

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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