A shocking email from an Indian River board member highlights the vast amount of corruption and scandal coming from the highest levels of the state when it comes to Patrick Miller. We are all wondering how the current President of the Board at Indian River Volunteer Fire Company is still walking around free.
It appears there was collusion going on between various Delaware agencies when it came to the Indian River School District audit investigation in 2016. As a result of that collusion, Patrick Miller walks free and Susan Bunting became the Delaware Secretary of Education. Continue reading
The former Superintendent of Indian River School District who is now the Delaware Secretary of Education, Dr. Susan Bunting, was well aware Patrick Miller, the former Indian River Chief Financial Officer, was stealing money. Despite telling the Auditor of Account’s office, Delaware media, and the staff of Indian River that she was shocked and had no clue about what Miller was doing, she knew. In fact, she knew going back to at least 2008. Continue reading
As part of their audit investigation with the State Auditor, the Superintendent of Indian River School District and the Director of Personnel told the Auditor of Account’s Office there had never been any formal complaints against their former Chief Financial Officer, Patrick Miller. They lied. Warning: some of the language used by Patrick Miller in the parent’s complaint is NOT SAFE FOR WORK. Continue reading
Brandywine School District. Indian River School District. Indian River Volunteer Fire Company. What do all three of these have in common? Patrick Miller. A man accused of financial fraud in the two districts who is not behind bars. High crimes and misdemeanors indeed! But he is a free man. How is that even possible? Continue reading
Indian River has a referendum coming on November 22nd. Before that happens, the Delaware Auditor of Accounts office will issue an audit inspection report. A citizen in the district paid for ads in the Sussex County Post with allegations against the district and how they are spending money. In response, Indian River Superintendent Dr. Susan Bunting, Board President Charles Bireley and Board Vice-President Rodney Layfield submitted a letter to the editor at the Sussex County Post.
Many of the ads attacking the referendum and the response from the district center around the former Chief Financial Officer, Patrick Miller. Miller resigned earlier this year without any public knowledge of the events which led to his resignation. He was put on paid administrative leave the month prior.
As a result of the letter from the district, there is some clarity around the hiring of Miller in Indian River:
It should be noted that Mr. Miller was hired by the Indian River School District in September 1998, approximately six weeks before the state auditor’s office began its investigation of Brandywine’s finances. The final auditor’s report was not issued until September 2000 and Mr. Miller’s criminal case was not adjudicated until November 2000, more than two years after he was hired by IRSD.
As it turns out, the district is claiming they requested an audit, even though no prior audit report suggested a problem:
The public should know that the district requested the audit that is currently being conducted by the state auditor’s office. This request was made based upon information received in April by the administration and Board of Education. Therefore, any accusation of a “cover up” is unfounded, misleading and unfair.
One item in the letter puzzled me greatly.
The district is committed to being a good steward of our taxpayers’ dollars. This is evident in the property tax reductions implemented by our Board of Education during the past three years.
If the district knew they had all these future costs coming and a student population growing by leaps and bounds, why would they lower property taxes? Were these for things like tuition tax or because prior referenda increases ran out? For example, the capital costs for a school building do not last forever. Eventually those increases end. If that is the case with Indian River, it doesn’t show the board just deciding to lower taxes but rather they are following what was naturally supposed to happen.
While I have posted what amounts to rumors (although told to me by many different people not associated with each other) regarding Miller, I will wait to see what the audit investigation reports. I believe that when taxpayer dollars are at stake in the operation of a school district which has over 10,000 students in it, the privacy of one employee should not be given greater weight than everyone else involved in the district. There needs to be some type of legislation allowing a school district or board of education to release information when something happens that triggers an investigation from the auditor’s office. When there is very little transparency surrounding serious issues, especially during a referendum campaign, the public needs to know exactly what is going on. If this were a charter school, they would be forced to reveal what is going on through a formal review process. We need that type of mechanism for our local school districts as well.