Sen. Bob Dutton's letter to California Attorney General Jerry Brown

Document Sample
Sen. Bob Dutton's letter to California Attorney General Jerry Brown Powered By Docstoc
					April 8, 2010

Attorney General Jerry Brown
California Department of Justice
1300 I Street
Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear Mr. Brown:

I am writing to request that you undertake an immediate and thorough investigation into the
allegations of financial misconduct and political corruption by Chancellor Elihu Harris during his
tenure as Chancellor of the Peralta Community College District (PCCD).

California’s community colleges, including the four colleges in PCCD, provide important
educational opportunities for Californians of all economic backgrounds. During these difficult
economic times, they are also providing vital job training services to many unemployed citizens
in our state. Each wasted dollar is one less dollar available to fund these needed services.

In addition, PCCD is also uniquely responsible for administering nearly half a million dollars in
penalty funds each year for the California Council on Diesel Education and Technology.
Although other college districts participate in this program, PCCD is entrusted with distributing
the funds to all program participants.

For all of these reasons, it is extremely disconcerting that Mr. Harris may have abused his
position of trust during his six year term as chancellor.

According to media reports, Mr. Harris allegedly helped steer a $940,000 no-bid construction
contract to a long-time business partner and then attempted to have an employee of the
university fired who brought the corruption to light.

Questions are also being raised regarding a vacant lot PCCD sold to a developer in 2003, only to
buy the land from the same developer nearly five years later for $300,000.

Rather than responding to these allegations with transparency, PCCD has spent nearly $100,000
to block public disclosure of the report by Peralta’s inspector general. PCCD’s legal expenses
are mounting even while its educational services are being reduced.
Attorney General Jerry Brown
April 8, 2010
Page 2

California is facing extremely difficult fiscal and budget times. Now more than ever, it is
imperative that every single taxpayer dollar is well spent.

I trust that you will take these allegations of political corruption and financial misuse of
educational dollars very seriously and ensure that they are thoroughly investigated by your

Thank you in advance for your response. If you or your staff has any questions, please do not
hesitate to call me or my Chief-of-Staff Sean Wallentine at (916) 651-4031.


Senator, 31st District

Cc:    Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger
       California Community Colleges Chancellor Jack Scott

Description: Letter from State Sen. Bob Dutton urging Attorney General Jerry Brown to investigate allegations of corruption and misconduct by Peralta Community College District Chancellor Elihu Harris.