Vote of confidence for Evansville's city auditor - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Vote of confidence for Evansville's city auditor

Some stern advice was given Monday night from the president of the Evansville City Council. A group, she says, is becoming more like a student council than a city council.

"We need to be more professional in doing our job. Now, if anybody is upset because I said that, to hell with them and I'm sorry," city council president, Connie Robinson, said in Monday's meeting.

That exchange followed the discussion of an investigation surrounding an accountant hired by the city council. 

Things got heated in Monday night's meeting. The issue involves David Garrett, an accountant hired by the city council to help look over the books, after a state audit last year found some red flags. The investigation and some debate in the meeting focused on Garrett's qualifications.

An anonymous complaint made by phone to a state board has some questioning the motive behind it.

"The only word that comes to mind to describe it is, it's disgusting," Scott Danks said.

City council attorney Scott Danks vows to find out just who made that complaint, alleging council members were mislead about Garrett's credentials. Back in November, the council's finance chairman, John Friend, described Garrett as a certified public accountant, even though Garrett's CPA license expired in 1997.

"He said he's a CPA, among a lot of other things. So the word 'was' was left out of there," Danks said.

It's something that's caused some behind the scenes controversy since Garrett was hired. Some council members even questioning if it was one of their own who phoned in the complaint.

"I wonder why people are so afraid of this man," Dan Adams said.

Danks calls the investigation malicious because he says the service Garrett is providing at $20,000 for one year doesn't require a CPA license.

Councilman Jonathan Weaver, who voted against hiring Garrett, then questioned why the position wasn't bid out and more candidates looked closely.

Weaver also says he's concerned by this financial report from Garrett that the city's controller says contains some unfounded allegations.  

In the end, the city council on Monday gave Garrett a vote of confidence by a vote of 7 to 2.

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