A statement given by McHenry County Board member Nick Provenzano to the Finance and Audit Committee Thursday morning:
When I was first elected to the County Board I had the opportunity to help shepherd through the first ever Ethics Ordinance in the County.I also led the fight to adopt a Whistle Blower Ordinance designed to root out potential corruption in County Government AND even within the operations of our vendors.
The Whistle Blower Ordinance protected those employees both internal and external that were brave enough to point out practices of theft and fraud in purchasing activities here in McHenry County.
As this committee is keenly aware the County has for several years now implemented surprise audits of Senior Service Grants recipient organizations.
And this committee is all too familiar with my recognition of those audit and my extensive efforts to make certain these audits are released to the public to ensure the highest levels of transparency because, it’s not our money were granting, it’s the taxpayer’s money and they have a right to know if it’s not being spent correctly.
Today, I have the opportunity to raise an idea not of my own creation and not even new to Illinois, but an idea that assures we and our not-for-profit partners move to an even higher level of transparency.
I would like to announce today my efforts, through this committee, to begin to investigate and bring to fruition a Grant Transparency Clause Resolution that builds on the current practice of grant audits to require any organization that accepts county grant dollars to follow the State Freedom of Information Act laws.
FOIA is one of the most effective investigative tools at the disposal of the general public to peer inside the inner operations of government and to know definitively how their tax dollars are spent.
This level of transparency should follow those tax dollars into the halls of non-profits as well.
This action should in no way be misinterpreted to cast a negative shadow on any of the wonderfully effective, efficient and hardworking non-profits in McHenry County.
This is a preventative measure that is designed to ensure the integrity of these operations continue years into the future and beyond the term of current personnel of high integrity whom we all work and interact with on a regular basis.
Therefore, I ask that Chairman Skala place on the agenda for the next Finance & Audit Committee meeting the item of Grant Transparency Clause so that this committee can begin to work with the State’s Attorney’s office and any other members of County government as needed to bring this concept to reality as quickly as possible.
The Taxpayer’s of McHenry County deserve nothing less.
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Yesterday, McHenry County Blog published, “Transparency – Follow the Money.”