Just when we thought there was a some movement on the irregularities at the City owned “Poop Farm” we hear the internal auditor has quit. Steve Rehn would not discuss his departure, but said he is leaving by his own choice to accept a “better job opportunity.”
The GUARDIAN has been deluged with information about all sorts of allegations the city has allowed to go unchecked over the years at the Twenty Mile South biosolids site near Kuna since we first broke the story last June.
Contrary to claims from city media “spinsters” that posting set off a massive internal audit headed by Steve Rehn–the guy the council hired to guard against fraud after the Brent Coles fiasco.
Rehn raised so many red flags it looked like a parade in Communist China. So far, felony charges have been filed against the farm manager and another worker has been subject of personnel action. He is no longer on the job.
Rehn’s departure should be of concern to anyone looking for accountability within city government. While he did an adequate job in the auditing process, we have yet to learn if there is anyone assigned OVERALL responsibility for the situation at the Poop Farm. SOMEONE should be coordinating the criminal, human resources, legal, and financial auditing functions.
The problems uncovered there reveal a system that is in need of more corrective action than just a single criminal charge and firing. GUARDIAN sources–whom we suspect are current and former employees–tell us they followed protocol to alert their supervisors to the financial wrongdoings “for years, but nothing was done.
A clear understanding of what was done, how it was done, and why it was undetected is important. We have been advised of a dual set of books, questionable crop yields, alleged offsite construction using city-purchased material, and insider lease agreements–none of which seem to be in the audit report.
No way to tell if the city is even investigating any of the above since their audit is secret (part of a criminal investigation) and the auditor is leaving.
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