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Memorandum of Record

Written over a two-day period June 24 and 25, 2017

From: Tim Flora, Finance Director

Subject:

This memo is documentation of conversations and events from the week of June 18, 2017 relating to
. I believe information I have gleaned over this time period warrants an
investigation of for the following abuses: misuse of County resources, perceived
coercion of subordinate staff to take an inappropriate action, use of two other staff member’s purchase
cards contrary to County policy, and falsifying timecard records.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

During a discussion with and regarding progress of


the Retirement/Retention Incentive review, it was discussed that we had a final decision from the State
that the retention incentive would not be allowed as part of the pension calculation. mentioned
there would be paperwork that would need to be completed on all participants. When I asked
about the additional work I asked for, mentioned questionable events surrounding the retirement
of . (For context: was awarded a
retention incentive by . However, retired prior to completing the agreed
upon service requirement. I remember discussions at the time in my new role as interim Finance
Director with and that would get the remainder of
retirement incentive paid out after retirement like the rest of those participating in the Early
Retirement Incentive (ERI)). indicated that had been moved into
. This was the first I had heard of this. It was unclear from
the information had, but it appears was/is receiving additional salary benefit.
mentioned annual leave sells and desire to get the issue resolved as to whether these should be
included in pension calculations (this is a discussion , , and I have had previously). It was decided
we would get on a conference call to the State now to pose the question. Having the question
nagging at me, I told and I would be right back.

I went to to see if was still receiving a paycheck from the County


as should not be according to my calculation. confirmed was still receiving a paycheck. I
asked to provide me additional information at a later time convenient for

Before heading back to and for the conference call, I went to


office to inquire further about situation. and were in
office. Before I could say anything, questioned (in a challenging tone) why I was meeting
behind a closed door with and ( and ). I told the State had
questioned one of retention incentive payments and I had asked to do an independent review.
I reminded that the State had previously rejected an incentive payment for (
) and when I appealed, it was again rejected. I told the entire program was in jeopardy
and I wanted an objective evaluation of it. I changed the subject and asked about situation,
asking why was moved into another position and because it looked like
was double dipping on some of retirement incentive benefit payments. looked stunned and

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said was only being paid the balance of what was owed. agreed and said
remaining salary from retention incentive was reallocated and paid out as part of ERI. When
asked why the need then to move into the position and then to do a ,
indicated that because did not complete retention incentive, did not have enough county
time in to qualify for health benefits. However, if the county time requirement was
different. (I was stunned by this statement as it appears to be an inappropriate use of County resources,
especially considering it was choice to retire and that should not have affected the County
giving a benefit she did not rightfully earn.) went back to questioning retention incentive
issue. I told I would get and we would continue the discussion.

When I returned to Finance to join the conference call with the State, said the State representative
was out. I briefly told and about my conversation with and and it was decided
and I would go down and talk about the status of the retention incentives and then tell we
would be asking the State about the use of sold annual leave in the pension calculation.

, , and I met in the Budget conference room. provided documentation from the
State about their decision to deny retention incentives as part of the pension calculation. said
was beginning to notify those participants in the program about the decision. mentioned that
wanted to get to since was retiring end of the month and felt needed to
know immediately. wanted to know if any of incentive payments were kicked out or any
of other incentive payments than the one we mentioned. said no. questioned why we
needed to bring up the other incentive payments if the State hadn’t rejected those. I told that
since we received the final ruling, we had a duty to correct all the others. was not happy. I told
we also wanted to get clarification from the State as to whether annual leave sells qualified as
retirement payments and could be included in the pension calculation. became agitated and
demanded to know who was asking that question, whether it was us bringing this up or the State.
said we were seeking the clarification because it had come up in an earlier discussion with .
said something to the affect it would be unfair to change this now. (Context: has been
systematically selling banked annual leave over the course of several months.) said resolving
the question wasn’t meant to be punitive but that we needed to know so we could take appropriate
action, particularly if our changes needed to be retroactive. suggested calling another government
to see what they did but it was decided if we didn’t get the answer we liked, we would still need to take
action. said that what we should do was to not question the State but instead change our policy
moving forward (my interpretation as being after July 1 when was gone) to not report annual leave
sells to ORBIT. (My impressions and feelings at the time: The conversation was very uncomfortable and I
felt uneasy since all of us in the room are . I had a sense we were being coerced
into a decision.) I suggested that we not tie this question to the retention incentives issue with the State
and that at a later time after July 1, we pose the question to the State separately as a generic how-do-
we-do-this question. Since we are currently dealing with another issue with ORBIT on Leave Without
Pay, I said we could easy tie it to this. agreed this was a better approach and and
agreed to do it this way. left the meeting. I stayed with and to make sure
understood what we were doing. I told it was unfair that and I even had to be dealing with this
now and that the former and should have resolved these issues prior to
them being implemented. said was already taking a big hit with losing the retention
incentive and it would affect annual pension by $30,000.

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I later saw and said that I felt we needed to compromise on touching base with the State regarding
annual leave sells because I wasn’t sure how would react. said understood why we needed
to hold off. I said we just needed to wait until after July 1 and decide how we want to handle it.

I received emailed information from pertaining to


retirement incentives.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Met with to go over retirement incentives. Based


on information from and looking at a Position Allocation Report date 10-7-2014, it
appears that lied to me about the nature of payments. received
$40,884.95 of retention incentives prior to retiring and full salary of $145,660.32 as early retirement
payments. I provided this information to to include in report.

mentioned increased activity on pcard.


provides part-time administrative support to . I requested from
the last six months of pcard and petty cash receipts for review. There were a number of
suspicious purchases, one for a Bose system that included an email asking if had
made the purchase to which replied yes. I asked if had card and used it.
said asked for card information months ago and does make periodic purchases.
knows this is prohibited per County Policy. I had card canceled immediately.

Another suspicious request was for to purchase a replacement iPad for that had
a damaged one. In addition, two other iPads were requested to be purchased with no explanation given.
This is odd as usually asks me or the IT department to deal with iPad/iPhone
replacements for I later went down and questioned
whether knew who had damaged their iPad. was not aware of any but did
indicate gave two other iPads to store. preferred to not keep these as had
previously given one to keep and it later went missing. gave me the other two iPads for safe
keeping. It is assumed these are to two purchased.

Other suspicious activity on pcard includes the payment of two Verizon phone bills. This is
unusual as turned in County iPhone to me shortly after announcing
retirement on . If is issued a County phone then there should not be a reimbursement
for a personal phone.

During conversation following County Management Director meeting, mentioned that when
previously provided part-time administrative support for , became
uncomfortable with some pcard purchase requests made by but that due to
position, no questions were asked.

Received information from that texted to


request to do a requisition for $45,000 to Miscellaneous account to the
Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute. This is for public safety/health for citizens and will provide
glasses the County will distribute at libraries. The requisition would be for
approval and coordinated through .

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I went to ’ office and questioned about this requisition. received a text from
that a requisition would be coming. did not know the amount. When informed of the large
amount, was suspect and did not want to approve. Later when
came into the office for another matter and was brought into the conversation, there was a consensus
this didn’t feel right and should be a Board decision. didn’t know if had enough budget to
cover this. I said I thought had sufficient budget and that it was coming out of the
budget. We all agreed this type of purchase felt awkward coming out of the
budget.

Friday, June 23, 2017

In a follow up conversation with about the $45,000 requisition, reiterated did


not want to approve it. No requisition has been received as it is suspected Accounts Payable is still
waiting on vendor information in order to create the requisition. During this conversation
again showed up and a discussion of request to sell exempt comp
time ensued. mentioned since , , and myself
were unwilling to sign off on this leave sell, it would be either responsibility or that of
to approve. mentioned had texted that HR was preparing a
PAF (Personnel Action Form) that would need to be approved by . Since was out of
town, said would text to get approval and then text that approved it.
could then stamp it with electronic signature. told and me that unless
got that information directly from , would not put electronic signature on the
document.

During a meeting with and to discuss


progress of the Retirement Retention Incentive review, mentioned makes pcard
purchases for . is a former and had knowledge of
responsibilities of pcard purchases for as one came up through a random monthly
pcard audit sometime in the past (I was IT Director then, said). Regarding recent discussions with
and attempt to sell executive comp time and the excessive
amount of hours is trying to sell, I asked to see some timecard information. mentioned that
request increased a hundred hours from an earlier request from last week. mentioned
that most recent timecard showed over 100 extra hours. (This amount raises suspicions of
whether is falsifying timecard records.)

I called and asked if currently makes purchases for said yes. I asked if has
pcard number. said requested a copy of card. I told I would be cancelling
card but provided no other information. was concerned that Verizon phone bills would
not be paid. I assured we would take care of purchases. volunteered that makes
“thousands of dollars” of gift card purchases for .

I immediately had card canceled and notified (


supervisor) that we were canceling it and saying we could reissue another card to if wanted.

Having had a conversation several years ago with about supplying office supply gift cards to
, I inquired of if had within the past year or so supplied gift cards to
. was not aware of any but did say that had once mentioned

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concern of having to buy gift cards for to places like Target, Best Buy and Sam’s Club. did
remember one occasion several years back that were given a Staple’s gift card and that
some uncomfortable with that and it did not happen again.

I called to confirm whether or not continues to make purchases for on


pcard and whether at any time provided with pcard information. replied no to
both questions.

I met with . I provided the receipt information from and


passed along my conversations with and . I asked to investigate.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Asked whether any Service Desk tickets or other requests were made to replace
or activate new iPad for .

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