Wednesday, January 5, 2011

ZAP! #37: Secret Box

ZAP! #37....January 5, 2011

What is the cat hiding in the litter box?

According to a Dallas Morning News article today, , it seems as if the Irving city council, city administration and Entertainment Center partners do not want anyone scratching around in their litter box. All of these folks have signed a “confidentially agreement” with regards to early findings of audited expenses for the Entertainment Center project. What?

Stating only the final audit report will be available to the public, the major question for council members remains: What expense exceptions has the city convinced the auditors to keep out of the final report? Did any of these initial audit exceptions bend/flex/break/stretch GAAP regulations? Just what doesn’t the council, city administration and Billy Bob’s cohorts want you to see that isn’t in the final audit report? Will the “independent” auditors go along with this political charade and assist the parties to the audit by invoking “working paper” proprietary information? Who put this bug of having a “confidentiality agreement” in play? Has anyone determined who was actually in charge of monitoring these expenses to allow such a shoddy payment process to be in practice?

Let the finger pointing begin. And all the while, tax payer confidence in this project coupled with the voodoo financing questions make one wonder whom our elected representatives are really representing.

The next time one of these individuals opines on transparency, accountability and full disclosure with regards to projecting or spending public funds on anything having to do with the Entertainment Center project...roll your eyes.

After all, we really know what the cat was burying in the litter box.

...Here's what some readers thought of the "confidentiality agreement" the council and city imposed on the EC audit data...Mark Holbrook

A reader sez:

“Can a confidentiality agreement bar an elected official from disclosing what the public has the right of access to or to know ? Is the matter barred from discussion exempt from disclosure under the Texas Open Records Law and other similar laws ?”...Anonymous

A reader sez:

"I think they are inappropriate and legally questionable for elected officials. In this instance this is just plain silly not to mention looking bad." ...Anonymous

A reader sez:

“Well put. I hope there are more people than just me to enjoy this.” ...Anonymous