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Audit Report On St. Joseph School District To Be Released February 17

Sam Zeff

The long anticipated report from the Missouri State Auditor on the scandal-plagued St. Joseph, Mo., School District will be released on Feb. 17.

Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich made the announcement Wednesday. The audit will be released during a public forum at Oak Grove Elementary School. While most audits are simply released online or at a news conference some high profile audits are released at public events.

While no one who has seen the draft audit would talk about specific recommendations or findings all have said the report is scathing and examines district finances and procedures going back to 2000.

The state auditor embedded a five member team in district headquarters last spring after it was revealed that Superintendent Fred Czerwonka doled out $5,000 payments to 54 top administrators without approval from the school board.

Since that time the FBI and a federal grand jury have launched investigations into the district.

The Board of Education, in a closed session two weeks ago, also voted to place Czerwonka and district COO Rick Hartigan on paid administrative leave after the board reviewed the draft report from the State Auditor.

The district is also being sued by its CFO, Beau Musser, for slander and violations of Missouri's whistleblower law.

You deserve to know what your taxpayer dollars are paying for and what public officials are doing on your behalf – I’ll work to report on irresponsible government spending in the Kansas City area and shed light on controversies that slow government down. And when you hear my voice in the morning, you know you’re getting everything you need to start your day. Email me at sam@kcur.org, find me on Twitter @samzeff or call me at 816-235-5004.
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