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Subscriber Special: Exposing $26 Million of Hidden Payments at College of DuPage

College of DuPage (COD) Is Caught
Faking Transparency… to Pass the Goodies.


$26 Million Spent on What?  Administrators Knew, But College’s Trustees Didn’t
By Jake Griffin Tax Watchdog Editor | September 17, 2014
READ TODAY’S FRONT PAGE DAILY HERALD

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Dead elephant, shooting club, global satellite phones, double dipped reimbursements, $26 million in hidden payments
to school vendors and employees…
$26 Million Selfie at Illinois Jr College
READ MY FORBES EDITORIAL HERE
(trending with over 24,000 views)

 
COD President Breuder billed taxpayers and students for
three global satellite phones on his exotic hunting trips.

Faking Transparency at COD

In 2008, the COD Board unanimously passed the For The Good of Illinois “open book test”- posting all public payments on their website. Read 2008 Illinois Review column and coverage in Washington Examiner

But, COD didn’t follow their own rules. In fact, President Robert Breuder and Chairman Erin Birt used “imprest accounting” to hide over $26 million in recent school vendor and employee payments. Now, COD Vice Chairman Kathy Hamilton, CPA is spearheading the effort to “open the books”-again.

We discovered 21,000 hidden transactions to 5,613 entities for $26.1 million since April, 2013!

Here’s a snapshot of COD payouts via this accounting scheme:

1.         Over $110,000 spent purchasing wine and alcohol described in the register as “instructional supplies.” 

2.         President Breuder’s private membership dues to the Max McGraw club ($3,800) and three global satellite phones used on Breuder’s exotic hunting trips were not disclosed. Total payments into Max McGraw club were $6,693- including an overnight senior management retreat.

3.         COD President and senior managers double dipped their car allowances and collected over $3,600 of in-district mileage reimbursement.

4.         Even the accountants and lawyers gleaned non-disclosed payments: Crowe Horwath, $56,029; Robbins, Schwartz $178,652; and Franczek Radelet, $71,780.

5.         Legat Architects- the lead architect for the  Homeland Security Education Center at COD (which will bear Dr. Robert Breuder’s name after his retirement) was paid-out $164,421.

6.         Other connected vendors include COD Foundation Board members- lobbyists and construction companies- received large non-disclosed payments. i.e. Herricane Graphics ($227,157); Roger Marquardt & Co ($85,000); Wight & Company ($31,431); Fuchs & Roselli, Ltd. ($14,698); Power Construction ($5,000); Bison Gear & Engineering ($4,064)

7.         Designated ‘petty cash’ funds were hardly used, only $1,774 in payments, while ‘imprest funds’ handled 21,000 transactions.

8.         Although President Breuder recently said ‘imprest payments’ were only used on amounts under $15,000, the data shows 106 payments exceeded that threshold and totaled $2.327 million.

9.         Over $300,000 paid-out in newspaper and magazine advertising/ subscription expense. 

We invite everyone to search the $26.1 million in previously hidden payments posted at OpenTheBooks.com.  Please let us know what you find: CLICK HERE.

For The Good of Illinois. 

ADAM ANDRZEJEWSKI 

Founder & Chairman, For The Good of Illinois   

PS. We could not do this work without you. Please help our research teams with a generous investment.

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