EDGAR CO. (ECWd) -
On April 29, 2013, the Illinois Department Of Transportation issued it's final determination letter in reference to the private driveways that were chipped and sealed using public equipment, personnel, and funds. We originally reported on this issue a little over 10 months ago with these articles: here, here, here, and here.
We also reported last month, that West Township in Effingham County (and probably others) were doing the same thing and IDOT will start that investigation soon.
Keep in mind when reading this that more accounting controls and a specific policy of not using public funds for private property has been implemented by the County. In other words, it will not happen again...
Finding Number 1
That Edgar County, Symmes Township, and Paris Township MFT and other local monies were used for the chipping and sealing of private driveways for certain individuals, dating back from 2004 through 2011.
Specifically: Chris Patrick, Bradley Young, Kirk Good, Steve Sunkel, and Donnie Furry.
Noteworthy in the report is that Chris Patrick received not one but two free driveways. Free because the claim of bartering rock for the work could not be substantiated by the investigators.
"We have been unable to substantiate the veracity of this claim"
Even more interesting is how this report proves Mr. Patrick lied during the county highway study session on this matter. Not only was the investigation not completed as he claimed months ago, it clearly supports he paid nothing for his tax payer funded driveway.
Is anyone else surprised that Mr. Patrick is the only one who received private benefit from the public dime with no cost to himself?
Finding Number 2
That personal driveway repairs billed to individual was below cost and fair market value.
Finding Number 3
That payments received for private driveway repairs were not recorded as MFT Fund recovery.
We do note that all items were corrected and that the County has taken measures to make sure this does not happen again.
Please read the IDOT Report for a more in-depth report of the IDOT recommendations and Edgar County's responses to those recommendations.