May 26, 2012

Group says emails document 'witch hunt' targeting MSHA

Treasurer Bruce Poliquin says critics did nothing improper.

By Ann S. Kim akim@mainetoday.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

"With this support, the new Administration will have 5 of 9 votes," Poliquin wrote.

Capoldo is now on the board.

Korzen said those email threads show the emphasis on partisanship on the housing authority's board.

Dutson said Friday that his organization has always been interested in getting to the bottom of public expenditures, not just in the case of McCormick and the housing authority. He said the policy center will continue to interact with all kinds of government agencies and personnel, just as other advocacy groups do.

Dutson said it shouldn't be shocking that his organization is involved in state government. He noted that his predecessor, Tarren Bragdon, ran LePage's transition team and that Education Commissioner Stephen Bowen was the policy center's education policy director.

"What I think you have here is a lot of nasty adjectives and adverbs around zero substance," Dutson said of the allegations of Maine's Majority.

Anastos said he and the Maine Heritage Policy Center have an interest in solving spending problems, and the policy center had information through Freedom of Access Act requests that authority board members weren't able to get themselves.

He said that included information about the housing inspections and a list of conferences that members of the housing authority's staff attended -- 42, in locales including Denmark and Japan, over five years.

"I know it sounds crazy that (the policy center) had more facts than the board, but that's absolutely what happened," he said.

Anastos does not contend that fraud occurred in the housing authority, but said he believes it misused some money, lost focus and allowed costs to escalate.

Staff Writer Ann S. Kim can be contacted at 791-6383 or at:

akim@pressherald.com

Twitter: AnnKimPPH

 

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