Taylor Reveals Extent of Theft at Kenston Local School District

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Geauga County - Auditor of State Mary Taylor today released an audit of the Kenston Local School District, which confirms details of a former school employee’s scheme to pocket more than $134,000.
The report reveals that former Assistant School Treasurer Geraldine Kanieski wrote dozens of fraudulent checks to herself worth $134,855 from 2004 to 2009. The theft was discovered when Kanieski took a paid vacation and other employees who were covering her duties noticed the discrepancy and called police.
“Our public schools simply can’t afford to lose thousands of taxpayer dollars to dishonest or criminally minded employees,” Taylor said. “As Auditor of State, I will continue to aggressively investigate allegations of theft and misspending of tax dollars and ensure those responsible are held accountable.”
Taylor’s report also provides school administrators with several recommendations on how to prevent similar issues from occurring in the future.
This is the latest in a series of public school thefts Taylor has revealed in recent state audits. In January, Taylor released details of a Toledo City School District administrator who directed nearly $700,000 in fraudulent payments to two Toledo-area businesses. The same man committed a nearly identical theft of an additional $180,000 while employed by the Cleveland Municipal School District.
Last year, Taylor investigated the financial activities of an administrator of the Clyde-Green Springs Exempted Village School District in Sandusky County. In that case, the school superintendent established elaborate schemes to steal nearly $300,000.
A copy of the complete audit is available online at www.auditor.state.oh.us.

The Ohio Auditor of State’s office is a leader in the accounting and auditing field, earning prestigious national honors from the Government Finance Officers Association, the National White Collar Crime Center and the National State Auditor’s Association.

Steve Faulkner
Deputy Press Secretary
(614) 644-0056