Bethel Resident Alleges Internal Audit of Abbott Tech Student Trustee Account Reveals $100,000+ Violation
Bethel Resident Alleges Internal Audit of Abbott Tech Student Trustee Account Reveals $100,000+ violation
The following Press Release was sent in by Daniel R. Gaita–
(This is a follow-up to the following News Times Story: http://www.newstimes.com/default/article/Funds-Abbott-Tech-reunion-both-restored-3116675.php )
7 p.m. EDT, April 15, 2012
Bethel, CT, April 15: In an effort to obtain their missing $9,741.68 of collected student dues for a 20th Year Class Reunion, it appears Abbott Tech Class of 1992 Graduates have revealed a more problematic pattern of financial abuses within the Danbury State Technical School.
A recently completed Internal Audit dated April 4th, 2012 and released by State Department of Education, Supervising Accounts Examiner Richard LeMay, revealed multiple instances in which the school did not adhere to established operating procedures or policies associated with Student Trustee Accounts (STA) transactions.
Specifically, the Audit revealed that on November 7, 2008 the school transferred $100,000.00 from the Kenneth A. Michael Scholarship Account to the Miscellaneous and General Surplus account within the STA. Based on scholarship criteria, The Kenneth A. Michael Scholarship Account is to be used for post-secondary scholarships and/or tool/equipment awards.
The Principal has stated that the monies were used for gym repairs/equipment that had not been approved as part of the school’s renovation project. Documentation reviewed by OIA indicated that approximately $91,235.00 was spent via the STA on gym related repairs/equipment and approximately $8,765.00 remained in the Miscellaneous and General Surplus account.
The Audit further identified that approximately $1,825.00 was disbursed for non-student activity related expenses including newspaper advertising, open house signs and a school sponsored dinner. The audit further claimed the expenditures noted above are “clearly School operating expenses and should not have been paid from the STA.”
Finally, the audit revealed that the School was unable to provide documentation of what had happened between 6/30/1998 and 7/31/1999, the period that the $9,741.68 disappeared from the Class of 1992’s Student Trustee Account Fund.
Following receipt of the Internal Audit, Class of 1992 President, Dan Gaita sought out other graduating classes to see if this issue was more common than they were led to believe by Robert F. Lombardi, Assistant Superintendent for the Connecticut Technical High School System who stated in a February 7th, 2012 News Times article that:
“This is the first time in 30 years I can recall something like this happening,”
Here is a link to that article: http://www.newstimes.com/local/article/Funds-Abbott-Tech-reunion-both-restored-3116675.php#ixzz1s9v78aub
Following several interviews with graduating class members going back to the 80’s, Gaita believes the issue if far more broad and systematic and he encourages all Henry Abbott Tech graduating class members and officers that were told their class funds “were gone” to contact him at email@example.com.
“Our class and now other graduating class members plan to continue to push for answers. We are united and hope others will continue to join us,” stated Gaita.
In February, the Class of 1992 was assured they would have their funds for their upcoming reunion. However, the latest audit which can be viewed in its entirety here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/89212163/Internal-Audit-of-Henry-Abbott-Tech-High-School-Student-Trustee-Account-April-2012 has left them uncertain.