Gaita Alleges Unauthorized Town Transfer
Editor’s Note: The following is a press release from Daniel R. Gaita and in no way reflects the opinion of the editor or staff of Bethel Buzz. The public is welcome to submit or comment on any content on Bethel Buzz’s website by sending press releases and information to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Press release from Daniel R. Gaita:
|Contact: Daniel R. Gaita
Phone: (203) 994-2987
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
1 p.m.. EDT, July 20, 2011
BETHEL BOARD OF FINANCE SPECIAL MEETING UNCOVERS POTENTIAL $3,000,000 UNAUTHORIZED TRANSFER OF TOWN GENERAL FUNDS
BETHEL, CT, JULY 20, 2011: Bethel Resident Daniel R Gaita, filed an Ethics Complaint this afternoon following a Bethel Town Board of Finance Special Meeting in which Board of Finance (BOF) Vice Chairman Mr. James Roden identified transfers from the Town General Fund to the Water and Sewer Department in an amount nearing $3,000,000 that had never been authorized by the Board of Finance.
An approximate 8:00 video segment of the meeting can be viewed at the following web page:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6MKVf1cTHA
The following sections of the Bethel Town Charter specifically require Board of Finance approval for such transfers and appear to have been violated:
Town of Bethel Charter Article 10, Section C10-4:
A. – All requests for special appropriations shall be made in writing to the Board of Selectmen, which shall forward such requests, together with the comments or recommendations of the Board of Selectmen, to the Board of Finance. The Board of Finance shall act on all requests for special appropriations and shall publish a notice of its action, together with the reasons for its action, in a newspaper having general circulation in the town.
B. – The Board of Selectmen, when requested by any town agency and after approval of the Board of Finance, may make special appropriations from any town agency surplus or an approved contingency fund in amounts not to exceed in total for any individual town agency twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000.) in any one (1) fiscal year. Any request by any town agency which shall exceed the amount herein provided shall require a vote of the Town Meeting after approval by the Board of Finance.
[Amended 11-7-1978; 11-4-2003]
C. – Special appropriations other than those from cash surplus or from an approved contingency fund may be acted upon only by a Town Meeting, after approval by the Board of Finance.
D. – The Board of Finance, upon written request, may transfer unexpended balances from one (1) appropriation to another in accordance with the Connecticut General Statutes.
It appears to be the same language in the 2003 Charter too. Here it is:http://www.bethelct.org/clerk/forms/town_charter.pdf
It appears these potentially unauthorized transfers had taken place throughout the last eight years according to our Town Comptroller, and perhaps as long as twenty years according to Town Council.
As a result, multiple administrations may be accountable and Mr. Gaita has requested an investigation and if applicable, appropriate legal prosecution specific to these alleged violations.
Daniel R. Gaita