By Kevin Deutsch
Fresh off his probe of Tamarac commissioners’ receipt-free expense accounts, Broward’s top watchdog is investigating a local non-profit’s financial dealings with the city, records show.
Broward County Inspector General John Scott is asking Tamarac to turn over a trove of financial and other records involving the Parks And Recreation Foundation Of Tamarac (PAROT), including checks, emails, and documents, as well as a city-owned iPad that was given to the non-profit. This was according to a May 4 records request sent by Scott’s office to the city.
The request covers the period of August 1, 2021, through Jan. 31, 2022. That span covers last Thanksgiving, when Tamarac Commissioner Marlon Bolton held a personal Thanksgiving Turkey Drive that appeared to have been paid for with checks cut by PAROT, according to reporting by Red Broward.
Established in 2011, PAROT has sponsored local golf and bowling tournaments to raise funds for kids in need to attend summer camp, the site’s reporting found.
But in August, Greg Warner, Director of Tamarac’s Parks and Recreation Department, asked PAROT to carry out a different task: the funding of Bolton’s Turkey Drive, Red Broward reported.
Other requests from city staffers to the non-profit followed, and on November 2, 2021, PAROT wrote a $500 check for “Commissioner Bolton’s Turkeys,” according to Red Broward.
Other PAROT checks covered $400 for “Commission Bolton-boxed lunches” and $1,341 for “Comm. Bolton—turkeys,” the website reported.
A promotional email sent by Bolton about the turkey drive listed PAROT as one of the event’s sponsors.
The scope of Scott’s probe was not immediately clear Thursday, but his request to the city asks that all records be provided to his office by May 18.
In April, as part of an unrelated probe, Scott identified the “potential for fraud, waste, and abuse” in the receipt-free expense accounts created for Tamarac city commissioners. But he did not substantiate allegations of misconduct and abuse related to the new expense law, according to the watchdog’s memorandum.
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- Kevin Deutsch is an award-winning crime journalist and author. A graduate of Florida International University, Kevin has worked on staff at The Miami Herald, New York Daily News, and The Palm Beach Post.
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