Springfield Technical Community College Audit Uncovers Former Vice President’s Wrongdoings
BOSTON, MA —State Auditor Suzanne Bump today announced an audit of the Springfield Technical Community College (STCC) which found a former Vice President stole school property, did not follow travel reimbursement policies, hired a family member and other consultants outside normal procedures, and used a STCC credit card without authorization.
Today’s audit was initiated as a result of a Chapter 647 report filed with Office State Auditor (OSA) by STCC. Chapter 647 of the Acts of 1989 requires all state agencies to report the loss or theft of state property with the OSA.
The audit makes public that a former Vice President of Business and Economic Development took a large flat-screen television worth over $1,000, a DVD player, and several cases of bottled water from the school for his own personal benefit. STCC security cameras recorded the Vice President physically removing the property. In 2009, after being presented with evidence of his theft, the Vice President immediately resigned and agreed to return all STCC equipment in his possession.
In addition, the audit found that in a three-year span the Vice President was reimbursed $7,614 for travel expenses without first getting the required supervisory approval. The audit discloses that STCC staff questioned the expenses and described them as excessive, but no action was taken and the expenses were reimbursed without proper approval.
The audit also found that STCC’s former Vice President, acting outside normal hiring procedures, hired his daughter as a part-time consultant. Auditors were unable to obtain important documents relevant to the employment of the Vice President’s daughter such as IRS tax forms, a job description, and timesheets documenting working hours. The Vice President’s daughter was paid $3,237.
Similarly, the audit found the Vice President hired three consultants, at a cost of $173,121, without following STCC policies to put their contracts out to competitive bid.
“This audit reveals clear cases of theft, nepotism, and inappropriate travel reimbursements,” said Auditor Bump. “It was troubling to see both an individual and a system that lack an ability to enforce those rules. I commend Springfield Technical Community College for the action they have taken to see such violations do not occur again.”
Auditor Bump has called on STCC to enforce all of its policies without exception and to improve its protections on resources and assets. The college has responded positively to all findings and is pursuing implementation of all of Auditor Bump’s recommendations.
The Office of the State Auditor Suzanne Bump conducts financial, performance, and technical assessments of state government’s programs, departments, agencies, authorities, contracts, and vendors. With its reports, the OSA issues recommendations to improve accountability, efficiency, and transparency.