Kevin Hardwick on $108K Comptroller’s Office Error and Fraud against Erie County

Since the beginning of this campaign, I have talked about how I have been teaching good government at Canisius College for 32 years and practicing it during my time at the Erie County Legislature.  I have asserted that what’s happening in the Comptroller’s office under the Mychajliw-Dixon team is not good government.

In the past, I have referred to their failure to adhere to state financial deadlines and the scathing peer review reports finding repeated problems over multiple years in the Comptroller’s Office. Today, the Erie County Attorney has alerted the District Attorney and the Legislature to a $108,000 fraud against the County – an action that was caused by Comptroller Mychajliw’s office, where Lynne Dixon serves as his top aide.

The Mychajliw-Dixon mismanagement of the Comptroller’s Office has not only caused taxpayers and residents to lose respect for that office, but now their actions have cost the County $108,000.

The lack of oversight and verification of banking information when issuing an electronic payment to a County vendor for a large contract is astounding. We know  from ‘scam’ phone calls on our phones and phishing attacks on our emails that there are those who will stop at nothing to steal our money. In fact, Erie County has been vocal about these efforts and directing County employees to be careful about opening emails and verifying senders to avoid this kind of situation.

Good government has gone missing in the Comptroller’s Office under Stefan Mychajliw and Lynne Dixon, and I am going to change that.  I will effect a culture change based on respect: respect for the important work of the office, respect for the people, who are career professionals, and most importantly, respect for the people of Erie County.

When I am Comptroller, the buck will stop with me.”

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