Finding for Recovery of $2,000 Issued Against Former Bethel Local Schools Superintendent over Unsubstantiated Compensation

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

COLUMBUS – A finding for recovery of $2,000 was issued Tuesday against the former superintendent of Bethel Local Schools in Miami County overcompensation he received without documentation that he was actually on the job, Auditor of State Keith Faber announced.

Justin Firks and his bonding company, along with district Treasurer Tina Hageman and her bonding company, are jointly and severally liable for the finding, which was included in an audit of the school district’s finances from July 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022.

A copy of the full report is available online  (ohioauditor.gov/auditsearch/search.aspx).

Auditors determined Firks was not in the office, did not use earned leave, did not have scheduled meetings on his calendar, and could not provide other evidence that he was working on four days. According to auditors, “… $2,000 of Mr. Firks’ gross salary could not be substantiated for these four days because of no evidence of working on district business.”


The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio is responsible for auditing more than 5,900 state and local government agencies. Under the direction of Auditor Keith Faber, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies, and promotes transparency in government.

Marc Kovac