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No accounting no-accounts

Register • Oct 22, 2013 at 5:00 AM

The city of Sandusky finally got itself reinstated in the federal Community Housing Investment Program, after spending three years in the penalty box for the theft and pilfering of previous grant funds designed to improve the housing stock in the city.

That prior theft and direct plunder totaled more than $1 million and the losses top an estimated $3 million, or more, when everything is factored into the equation. 

It's only an estimate, however, because city officials never did add up the losses, tally the totals or made good bringing anyone to justice for the losses. 

It might very well represent the largest heist from taxpayers' pockets in the history of the county, and there likely won't ever be a loss total, a resolution or any criminal trial. Taxpayers just kissed that money good-bye and nobody defended them against the loss. 

That's bad enough, but when a city commissioner pats the city on the back now that the funding's been reinstated, program, that's seems insulting. 

"Kudos to (staff) on fighting to get this program back," city commissioner Pervis Brown said last week during a commission meeting.  

And more than insulting, it's ignoring what went wrong and risking failure again. What will the city do to safeguard taxpayers from another run at the city treasury? What will the city do differently to assure the funding is not plundered and squandered again?

The CHIP housing program is likely to be a prime target again, since whoever made off with the booty the last time made a clean getaway. 

Those are the questions commissioners should ask and get answered. Commissioner Brown should just skip the meaningless platitudes.

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