Prior to taking action Saturday morning on placing Greencastle Community School Corporation CFO Clayton Slaughter on paid administrative leave, School Board President Bruce Stinebrickner read a board statement detailing how the situation evolved.
He addressed the audience, reading that statement as follows:
"The Greencastle Community School Corporation Board of School Trustees recently learned that Clayton Slaughter, the GCSC chief financial officer, did not follow the law in regard to the required timeframe for depositing more than $3 million of school funds.
"Indiana Code is very specific on the timeframe in which funds must be deposited, and Chief Financial Officer Slaughter failed to obey this state mandate.
"The relevant passage from the Indiana Code (IC 5-13-6-1) reads thus: Procedure for deposit of public funds -- All public funds paid into the treasury of the state or the treasuries of the respective political subdivisions shall be deposited not later than the business day following the receipt of funds on business days of the depository in one or more depositories in the name of the state or political subdivision by the officer having control of the funds.
"On the afternoon of Monday, June 18, as Superintendent (Lori) Richmond began to work on the 2013 school budget, she called the Putnam County Treasurer's Office with a question regarding when the school corporation might expect the final June tax draw. A clerk answered her question.
"A few minutes later, Putnam County Treasurer Sharon Owens phoned Superintendent Richmond back and informed her that the last county tax check written and delivered on May 24 to CFO Clayton Slaughter was still outstanding. This check was in the amount of $2,903,489.91.
"Dr. Richmond immediately informed the school board and the corporation's legal counsel that a large check written to GCSC had not being deposited in a timely fashion.
"In searching for this check in Mr. Slaughter's office, a total of 119 checks and cash were found dating back to March 3. The total of the undeposited funds was $3,031,347.88. This included checks from Putnam County, vendor checks, rebates, an insurance settlement, 3 grants, and checks for book fees. Some of the checks and cash were found in the CFO's safe and some in the desk drawer or under papers.
"Mr. Slaughter was away on vacation at the time of the Putnam County treasurer's call and the subsequent discoveries and was not scheduled to return to work from his vacation until July 2.
"After the undeposited funds were discovered, the checks and cash were processed and taken to the bank for deposit. On Tuesday, June 19, Superintendent Richmond notified the Indiana State Board of Accounts of the details of the discovery.
"While concerned about the CFO's failure to comply with IC 5-13-6-1 over a period of months, Superintendent Richmond and the school board are pleased to report that, to the best of their knowledge at this time, no taxpayers' money has been misappropriated as a result of the CFO's failure to deposit funds in accordance with the law.
"The GCSC school board expresses its heartfelt appreciation to Putnam County Treasurer Sharon Owens for her role in alerting the corporation to this problem.
"In addition, the GCSC school board wants to thank Superintendent Richmond for her careful stewardship of corporation finances. The board and the superintendent will continue to work together in investigating and following up on this particular episode, and will continue to make every effort to provide the best possible educational opportunities for all GCSC students.
"The school board and superintendent reaffirm their continuing commitment to ensuring that all relevant state and federal laws and regulations are observed in all operations across the entire district."