Benford probing deeper into 'questionable' DuPage Township expenditures
In May, information technology expert, Anthony D’Andrea, had his fill of helping DuPage Township.
D’Andrea told the Will County Gazette that he grew tired of Supervisor William Mayer “talking down to me” over the recovery of e-mails from a fired employee.
“I don’t need this,” said D’Andrea, who owns Ateki, an IT and network security company out of Bolingbrook. “I don’t have a contract. I don’t even charge for some of the work I do. But Bill keeps changing the rules over there.”
With D’Andrea’s departure, Mayer tapped the township’s General Assistance Fund, a fund set aside for the poor, for $4,000 to pay another IT company to recover the e-mails, a no-no according to Township Trustee Alyssia Benford.
“It (the expenditure) is my first question for our next board meeting,” Benford said. “The board did not approve the hiring of a new IT company. Approval was on the agenda of our May 8 meeting, but that was canceled. Approval never went back on the agenda after Supervisor Mayer decided which firm he wanted to us..”
Benford, a certified public accountant who is running as a Republican for state representative in the 98th, has been battling Mayer for months over discrepancies she has discovered in the township’s budget. The discrepancies exist in the General Assistance Fund and others within the township’s budget.
“This all started back in March after comments Mayer made about using the General Assistance Fund for something questionable,” Benford said. “I found an $80,000 accounting error between the ending fund balance and beginning fund balance.”
Additional expenditures from the fund, out of its “Home Relief” account include:
December 2016 – Papa John’s Pizza - $120.81
February 2017 – Power Connection - $500
March 2017 – Gordon Food Services - $3,856.75
February 2017 – Tailgaters - $825.00
February 2017 – Warehouse Direct - $276.32
March 2017 – American Association of Retired Asians - $500
March 2017 – Bolingbrook Police Benevolent - $500
March 2017 – Gordon Food Service - $705.99
March 2017 – United States Postal Services - $1069.72
April 2017 – Allied Benefit Systems - $3,175
March 2017 – Bolingbrook Cricket Club $3,000
May 2017 – Bolingbrook Police Benevolent - $500
May 2017 – Credit Card Use - $1,059.03
July 2017 – Valley View School District – AP testing- $2,754
July 2017 – Credit Card charges (job fair, school supplies, etc) - $9,544.16
John Kraft, of the Edgar County Watchdogs (ECW), said that none of the expenditures are authorized under Illinois law.
“The Public Aid Code does not say they can spend public funds on History Months, Cricket Leagues, Scholarship Funds, Pastors, Donuts, or Rotary Club Mac and Cheese dinners,” Kraft wrote on ECW’s news site, Illinois Leaks. “These expenditures violate Illinois law and must be discontinued.”
Mayer did not reply to a request for comment.