The Sweepers — Part 2

At last night’s GASD board meeting, we see how the board tries to end-around any public discussion of the audit findings– they convene in executive session.
Clearly, dealing with resignation and the personnel side of the finance manager absolutely requires an executive session. I have no qualms with that.
What I have qualms with is the larger issue of the board’s governance and their seeming unwillingness to  confront the deliberate effort to misinform and misrepresent the facts to the public, to the board and even to NYS Auditors. If the board feels this issue should be addressed in executive session, then they are violating the provisions of the Open Meeting Law as this discussion mandates discussion outside of executive session as most aspects of this discussion do not involve ‘personnel matters’ but policy matters. On the other hand, if they did not address or will not address the issue — for which I do not see any evidence that they have or will– then they are fallling short in their governance requirements. Either way, the board falls short of its responsibilities.  Sweep, sweep, …
Let me challenge the board to address this new revelation to the public (from the Recorder article):

Comptroller’s office spokesman William Reynolds said Tuesday the computer “simply wouldn’t turn on.

The specialist removed the hard drive from the computer and attempted to use alternative methods to retrievedata, such as supplying other power sources and using a different reading device, Reynolds said, but these didn’t work, either.

“He could not determine how it was destroyed, but that all attempts to read data on the drive failed, leading him to believe the drive was useless, inoperable, destroyed,” he said. “DiNapoli’s auditors told the superintendent about the matter, and according to them, he was unaware of this fact and indicated he could not explain how this occurred.”

As a board member and/or  audit committee member of the GASD,  the state auditors just told you that a deliberate effort was made to destroy information requested by the NYS auditors to be preserved. The key word here is ‘destroyed’.  Not my word, the state auditors word. The new finding is even more troubling than the initial report as it shows a deliberate act of destruction of school district property by an employee of the district.  Does this matter to the board?
Given the new finding and previous finding, I see not a word from any board member on the issue.
I’m expecting to hear a sweeping sound yet again but I’m naively optimistic that perhaps the board will recognize that they have a responsibility to the public to delve into these troubling details of how their administration and/or staff sought to compromise the findings of the state auditors and deliberately misrepresent the audit to the public as well. I guess I’m asking the board to make good on their propaganda promises of “making tough choices”, “looking out for the taxpayer”, “doing what’s best for our children”.
I already hear the collective yawn of the public on this post and issue…
Disclosure: I look forward to more derision, contempt and name-calling directed my way from current and past board members given these  posts. It’s never them; it’s always me who is the problem. Obviously.

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1 Response

  1. Todd says:

    The whole situatation represents the sad state of our government these days on every level. First you have a guy that has visited almost 500 porn sites in under a month. I am suprised he didn’t put in for overtime compensation during that month due to the time it took to view all that porn (although maybe he did). Then when the state auditors find it, Mr. Perillo completely goes against the auditors to say it was a virus that caused it (apparently Mr. Perillo is a computer forensics expert on the side). The district is then told that the state will be looking into it further (why the state didn’t just seize the computer makes me wonder if that is their way of letting the local officials destroy the evidence), and yet when they come back, the computer’s hard drive no longer works and is useless. That sounds like destroying government property (although I doubt police have been called, not that anything would be done). Aren’t crimes supposed to be reported to police? Doesn’t Mr. Perillo have a responsibility to the public to at least contact the police and allow a different branch of our government to sweep it uner the rug if they so decide? The board then decides to accept Mr. Porn’s resignation as he ” excercised his personal right to retire” and thank him for his service which I am sure was spotless(except for the momentary loss of judgement that caused him to surf porn for a month, I doubt he ever did anything else that was innapropriate). Mr. Perillo was actually quoted saying Mr. Porn “has been a loyal employee that always had the district as the number one priority”. Really Mr. Perillo??? I guess I should have been at the meeting that set “surfing internet porn” as a priority for the district. But now that Mr. Porn has just retired as if nothing else happened, he could probably be hired back as a consultant to show the rest of the administration the best porn sites at taxpayer’s expense.I would have hoped that the School Board would have had the strength and sense of morality to follow a different path and deny his resignation pending charges on Mr. Porn’s activities (although the way our state rules are I doubt anything Mr. Porn did could ever take away his precious publicy funded pension). I would also have hoped at the very least that Mr. Perillo and the Board would have made an attempt to make it appear that they even gave a crap about what Mr. Porn did on taxpayer’s time and on taxpayer’s computer equipment, which just goes to show what they think about us, the taxpayer’s. They do not give a CRAP about you, me or our children. Our children that are of the age to have read the story will now see that you can do anything you want with no consequence. That you Mr. Porn, Mr. Perillo and the Board for teaching our kids that morals and a good work ethic don’t mean much in the real world. We can now spend our time trying to counteract the vauable lesson our educational administration has provided.
    By the way, I fully support the actual teachers in our classrooms and have the most repect for them and the proffesion.

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