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Thursday, June 3, 2010

SHALL WE CRY WOLF "ONE MORE TIME?" THE FRUSTACI INVESTIGATION RESULTS ABOUT TO BREAK?

Maybe the frustration of county officials is about to end.

The SCPR has learned that the Stark County Prosecutor's office had one of its attorneys in Cleveland recently going over the progress of the Vince Frustaci investigation with the U.S. Attorney's office.

Readers will recall that on April 1, 2009 Stark County Treasurer Gary D. Zeigler fired Frustaci (his chief deputy) making allegations that Frustaci had stolen from the county treasury.

Stark County has spent $209,000 plus a little in fees paid to State of Ohio Auditor Mary Taylor's office for service rendered in conducting a forensic audit of the county treasury.  Results of the audit is in the hands of the United States Attorney.

Several weeks ago there was a big flap among the Stark County commissioners over the authority of the commissioners to pay the $209,000.  As far as the SCPR is concerned, the flap - started by the folks at The Repository - was "much ado about nothing."

The genesis of The Rep story was an agreement between the Ohio Auditor's office and Treasurer Zeigler regarding the outlining of and provision for payment of the auditor's services.

So what was the problem?

Zeigler's office chose not to share the existence of the agreement with county commissioners.

The Repository editors blasted county commissioners (blaming the failure to ferret out on the fact that the three commissioners are "all" Democrats" - how thin can you get in your reasoning?)  for not being on top of the situation and knowing about an agreement that Zeigler's office held out of public view on the suggestion of the Ohio Auditor's office itself.

If anyone thinks that the county commissioners were not going to have to pay the $209,000 plus out of county general fund dollars, then please see The Report about the sale of some swamp land in Florida.

A well placed source tells The Report that Stark Countians are likely to learn about the federal investigation within the next week to ten days.

Although The Report source is highly reliable, as we all know - "there is many a slip between the cup and the lip," and one has to be skeptical of any reports.

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