Chesco controller issues subpoena for K-9 money records

[This is precisely why voters elected new people and Democrats to four County row offices in 2017: to safeguard residents’ and taxpayers’ interests by ensuring transparency of government actions. Seniority in County office or the performance of well-trained dogs is not the question.]

By Michael Rellahan, Daily Local News, Aug. 10, 2018

WEST CHESTER >> The Chester County Controller’s Office has taken the unusual step of issuing a subpoena to obtain financial records from the county Sheriff’s Office related to its K-9 unit so funds raised for the unit’s support can be audited.

A spokesman for the sheriff, in response to the subpoena, called the effort “political witch hunting” by a “Johnny come lately” against an elected official who has won national acclaim for her work in office. He promised that the sheriff would cooperate with the controller’s investigation, however.

Controller Margaret Reif confirmed on Friday that the subpoena had been sent to the Sheriff’s Office earlier this month, several weeks after it refused to voluntarily comply with an Audit Engagement letter asking to review records for the K-9 unit in June. Reif said her staff was told that because the K-9 Unit’s support effort was not under the direct control of Sheriff Carolyn “Bunny” Welsh, the office was under no obligation to provide the records for inspection by the controller.

But Reif pointed out that the Sheriff’s Office had – up until recently – been using the county’s website, www.chesco.org, to promote and advertise ways for people to send private donations to help support the K-9 unit. That inclusion made the organization’s finances part of her purview….

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