The Paso Robles school board meets this evening at the district office. The board will discuss issues they would like an accounting firm to investigate to ascertain the level of fraud which may have occurred during the tenure of former superintendent Chris Williams.
Some of the issues which may be investigated:
Kickbacks from vendors who dealt with the district to current employees, former employees and their associates.
Spending during the Chris Williams administration. The board of trustees spent greater than ten million dollars more than the district took in, which exhausted the 6 million budget reserve and the $5 million dollar FEMA reimbursement.
Culinary Arts Academy. Like the district itself, the Culinary Arts Academy started out with a healthy reserve. But during the tenure of Greg Wangard, the Culinary Arts Academy went from generating more than $600 thousand dollars a year in revenue, to costing the district 400 thousand dollars a year. That’s a drop of one million dollars a year.
Hiring practices and nepotism. Some school district employees hired by Chris Williams received remarkable salaries without much workload. Unfortunately, there are still accusations that administrators and teachers are being promoted based on their allegiance to Chris Williams and his former administrators.
Tonight, the board will select issues to be investigated by the accounting firm doing the fraud investigation. The board contends the intent of the discussion is to minimize the expense of the investigation. To limit the investigation as a cost savings. Critics say the limitation is to protect current and former administrators who served under Chris Williams and current and former board members who share a financial responsibility for the gross negligence which occurred during the Williams administration.
The board meets at the district office around six this evening, after the conclusion of closed session.