How much money has to be stolen before it’s considered stealing? I reported the thief by the County Executive, where she took tax money and paid Commissioner Coleman for attending a meeting that both knew she had not attended. Some said, “well, that ain’t very much”, so for them it appears stealing is OK depending on the amount being stolen. Of course I have to wonder if someone stole fifteen dollars from their billfold if they would have the same attitude.
I reported on the County Executive’s scheme that give more than thirty thousand dollars of tax money, “under the table”, to an attorney friend. Still nothing was done, apparently that wasn’t enough tax money to be bothered with either.
So today I report on a little item listed on page 19 of the Pulaski City Audit that ended on 30 June 2014. It’s bad enough that $403,258.00 was spent on something identified as “CONTRACTUAL SERVICES” that has absolutely no defining explanation for it and then there is the item of $250,722.00 that was paid on a Spec. Building for the Industrial Development Commission.
Let me repeat that, on page 19 of that audit finding the City of Pulaski paid $250,722.00 for a spec. building for the Industrial Development Commission. That building continues to sit empty.
On Page 28 of that audit is stated, “The Pulaski - Giles County Industrial Development Commission is responsible for long range planning for City of Pulaski, Giles County and other local city governments. The Commission derives its funding primarily from the City of Pulaski and Giles County. Its Board is composed of representatives from the City, County and others. The Commission is not deemed to be financially accountable to the City of Pulaski and accordingly is not reported as a component of the City".
In simple terms the Industrial Development Commission is not accountable to the city of Pulaski but the City is obligated to pay the IDC's debts without question.
Very close to that expenditure of $250,722.00, is listed the additional expenditure of $45,100.00 as the city’s share of the IDC’s regular funding.
Some questions that arise from this revelation.
1. With over $250,000 paid out for this building by the city where is it listed in the city’s assets?
2. Why is this expenditure not explained or listed anywhere else in the audit as an asset, a liability, or by any other identifying characteristic.
3. Was the county asked to pay a part of this $250,722.00 and if so did they?
4. When and where was this expenditure approved by the city council and in what minutes is the vote recorded?
5. With the city actually using tax money to pay this mortgage who now holds title to the building ?
6. With the president of the bank that holds the note on this building, being the same person serving as the chairman of the IDC was the city and tax payer money used to avoid a loss to the bank?
7. Will this be allowed to be swept under the rug like so much other questionable behaviors or will this involve enough money to finally “matter”?