“Sed quis custodiet ipsos custodes? (But who will guard the guards themselves?)” — Juvenal
GERSTMAN’S GOTTA GO
So now Monroe County Auditor Amy Gerstman is facing another charge: She hasn’t been taking minutes at county meetings, as she’s required to do by state law.
This, of course, is on top of the charges that she used credit cards issued to her office for personal expenses like groceries, gifts, and even her kids’ private school tuitions. The county board voted to censure Gerstman yesterday.
The Soon-To-Be Ex-County Auditor?
Board members say Gerstman has been notably absent from board and committee meetings even though it’s her duty to record their proceedings. For her part Gerstman says she’s entitled to send a proxy to do that grunt work.
That would be fine if, say, Gerstman came down with the flu on the date of a meeting. But, if county board members are to be believed, this “flu” has lasted a long, long time.
I suppose we can’t blame Gerstman for not wanting to show her face at public meetings, considering the silly and embarrassing things she’s been doing with county dough. Admittedly, she has paid it all back but, as I cracked earlier, the bank robber who tries to return the sack of cash he took at gunpoint still is a bank robber.
Gerstman didn’t show up to work yesterday, indicating she may be contemplating doing the right thing. That’s resigning.
I mean, honestly, the woman is the auditor, for pity’s sake. Her job is to make sure the county’s money is being spent correctly. The Gerstman saga is the equivalent of learning that Sheriff Jim Kennedy runs a local crime syndicate.
And, BTW, Gerstman hasn’t been the only official who feels the county’s credit cards are really hers. Human Resources Director Rhonda Foster quit her post abruptly last week after it was learned she, too, had played fast and loose with county plastic. If not the flu, then something‘s going around the Showers Building.
The Ex-HR Chief
A regular county commissioners meeting is scheduled for tomorrow at City Hall at 9:00am. The smart move is for Gerstman to submit her resignation at the meeting and, perhaps, issue a heartfelt public apology at the same time.
We’re forgiving folks around here. We’re happy she’s paid back the money that she used for personal expenses. We hope she’s learned her lesson and will go on to thrive in the private business world.
But we know this: We don’t want Amy Gertsman watching our public funds anymore.
MONEY FOR SOMETHIN’
Yes, I realize I may be run out of town for this statement, but I’m glad somebody’s giving Indiana University a pile of cash for something other than a sports cathedral.
Kelley School of Business Dean Dan Smith and IU President Michael McRobbie are patting each other on the back for scoring a $33M grant from the Lilly Endowment for an expansion and renovation project. Kelley’s undergrad factory will gain an additional 71,000 square feet and will be decked out with all the latest hi-tech gadgets by 2015.
Excessively Straight-Backed Biz Students Watch Vid Screens In Their New Digs
That thirty-three large will be thrown in with some $27M already collected from alumni and other donors to round out the planned $60M job. The Lilly grant is the largest the Kelley has ever received as well as one of the biggest in the university’s history.
Smith says: “The new facilities will allow the school to more fully execute an experiential learning approach to business education.” I think he means the new plant will make Kelley students smarter.
Which I’ve always thought was the aim of a major university. Or even a minor one, for that matter.
See, I only arrived on the scene a couple of years ago. Native Bloomingtonians may be used to it, but I was shocked at the size and scope of IU’s sports facilities. And the area’s deep-pocketed usual suspects, like the late Bill Cook and the still-kicking John Mellencamp, seem always to be donating bread for another towering, sprawling gym or shower room.
How clean do our “student-athletes” need to be after a workout?
SMART COOKIE, PROUD PAPA
WFHB Music Director Jim Manion dropped by the Book Corner yesterday. He’s still crowing about his daughter Riley’s nomination to the Phi Beta Kappa Society in December.
They say pride is one of the deadly sins but when a guy is walking on air because his daughter has been named to one of the most prestigious academic societies on the planet, well, that ain’t no sin, baby.
Riley (l) And Jim Manion
The Pencil extends its warmest congrats to Riley and Jim.
MONEY (THAT’S WHAT I WANT)
Barrett Strong‘s “Money…” can be considered the granddaddy of all Motown hits. Start-up record impresario Berry Gordy, Jr. released the 45 in 1959 under his Tamla label and it became a hit in early 1960. Its success spurred Gordy to incorporate under the Motown banner that spring.