Conflict of Interest at Tomorrow Center Community School
Columbus – An illegal contract between husband and wife led to more than $53,000 in findings for recovery at Tomorrow Center Community School (Morrow County), according to an audit released today by Auditor of State Dave Yost.
“This is a blatant disregard for the law,” Auditor Yost said. “The only benefit you or your family should get from your public service is a paycheck and a sense of honor.”
In May 2011, the school’s board of directors passed a resolution authorizing bidding for occupational and speech therapy services. In February 2012, school director Michael Heath contracted these services to Brickner’s, Inc., however there was no documentation to prove the contract was let for bidding or that it was approved by the board of directors. The contract was signed by Heath and the president of Brickner’s, Inc., Val Heath, his wife.
Occupational and speech therapy services were provided to the school from December 30, 2011 to June 7, 2013. The audit also showed the first payment was made to Brickner’s, Inc. one month prior to executing the contract. A finding for recovery was issued against the Heaths in the amount of $53,239.
This matter has been referred to the Ohio Ethics Commission.
A full copy of this audit may be accessed online.
The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,800 state and local government agencies. Under the direction of Auditor Dave Yost, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies and promotes transparency in government.