June 10, 2010

Montgomery IG presses Leggett for tuition assistance review

Montgomery County's inspector general wants more details promised by County Executive Ike Leggett's administration on a tuition assistance program that wasted hundreds of thousands in taxpayer dollars, according to the watchdog. Inspector General Thomas Dagley, in a letter released Tuesday, pressed top Leggett officials for a "comprehensive review" of timesheets for police officers who attended the much-maligned classes. Dagley contends public safety officials used the program to buy guns at steep discounts subsidized by taxpayers -- and did so while on the clock despite pledging otherwise.

In a random sampling, Dagley found that 50 percent of officers who took the classes did so during their official workday. Dagley wanted executive branch officials to report the findings back to the County Council and Leggett by April 30. More than a month since the requested deadline, Dagley says he hasn't seen a review.

"You reported that you would keep the OIG appraised of the progress of this review and that any payroll errors will also be addressed in coordination with the County Attorney," Dagley wrote in a letter Monday to Chief Administrative Officer Timothy Firestine. Dagley is now asking for a timesheet analysis "no later" than July 2. Leggett spokesman Patrick Lacefield said the executive branch isn't bound by Dagley's suggestion. SOURCE: Washington Examiner

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