Tallying the cost of a theft
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Tallying the theft's total cost
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Beyond the $2.96 million stolen from county bank accounts, Stark County taxpayer money has been spent to investigate the theft, pursue recovery of the missing money through multiple court battles and upgrade security measures in the Stark County Treasurer’s Office.
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Here’s a list of expenses the county would not have paid had the theft never happened:
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Type of chargeChargeDescription
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Special audit$209,566For the 14-month special audit by the Ohio Auditor’s Office that began April 1, 2009 to investigate potential fraud and financial irregularities at the treasurer’s office.
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Legal fees$175,000To pay the Avon-based law firm Wickens, Herzer, Panza, Cook & Batista to cover their expenses for representing former Stark County Treasurer Gary Zeigler from March 1, 2011 through Oct. 17, 2011. The law firm submitted potential charges totaling $195,519, but agreed to the lower figure as part of the Oct. 19, 2011 settlement between commissioners and Zeigler.
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Legal fees$49,213To pay Wickens, Herzer, Panza, Cook & Batista for the 239 hours the law firm represented Zeigler between July 2010 and Feb. 28, 2011.
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Wages and benefits$35,074To Zeigler for the wages he lost between Aug. 23, 2010 and Oct. 19, 2011, minus his benefit contributions and withheld taxes. (Back pay originally totaled $79,154).
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Legal fees$23,391To pay Akron law firm Thompson & Bishop for representing Zeigler through Feb. 28, 2011.
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Wages and benefits$11,082For the county’s share of Zeigler’s pension contribution.
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Wages and benefits$6,075For the county’s share of Zeigler’s health insurance contribution.
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Equipment/supplies$3,987To install a new camera system in the Stark County Treasurer's Office vault.
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Bond premium$2,784To bond Treasurer Alexander A. Zumbar, who took office on Nov. 30, 2010. The $500,000 bond covers from Nov. 24, 2010 to Sept. 7, 2013.
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Bond premium$2,131Represents the difference in cost the county paid to secure a bond for Zeigler in 2009 compared to what the county had paid for a bond four years earlier. About $1,700 of the increase results from the commissioners' decision to double Zeigler’s bond from $250,000 to $500,000 in light of the suspected theft.
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Bond premium$1,645To bond interim Treasurer Jaime Allbritain for $500,000. She took office on Sept. 3, 2010.
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Wages and benefits$1,148For the county’s share of Zeigler’s contribution to Medicare.
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Wages and benefits$966To cover the county’s portion of the salary for Visiting Judge H.F. Inderlied Jr., who was appointed by the Ohio Supreme Court to hear the multiple lawsuits surrounding Zeigler’s employment and personal liability. The Ohio Supreme Court will pay Inderlied $7,408.
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Equipment/supplies$678To change the security combination and for other upgrades to the vault in the treasurer's office in 2011.
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Equipment/supplies$487For labels to conceal Zeigler's name on office envelopes.
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Travel expenses$395For mileage, hotel and food for two county prosecutors to travel to Columbus for arguments before the Ohio Supreme Court.
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Equipment/supplies$360To change the security combination for the treasurer's office vault when Treasurer Kenneth N.Koher took office in September 2010.
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Equipment/supplies$345For labels to conceal Zeigler's name on tax bill envelopes.
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Travel expenses$324To pay Judge Inderlied’s mileage costs.
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Equipment/supplies$311To change the vault combination in the treasurer's office shortly after the theft was first suspected in 2009.
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Bond premium$290To pay Travelers Casualty and Surety Co. of America to bond Treasurer Koher for $500,000 from September 2010 to Dec. 15, 2010.
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Equipment/supplies$276For new employee business cards that reflect Zumbar's name as treasurer.
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Website upgrade$240To remove Zeigler's name and photo and for other associated updates to the treasurer's website in October 2010. Total cost of the bill was $3,180.
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Equipment/supplies$158For new letterhead stationery for interim Treasurer Allbritain.
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Equipment/supplies$158For new letterhead stationery for Treasurer Koher.
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Equipment/supplies$158For new letterhead stationery for Treasurer Zumbar.
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Equipment/supplies$151To change the front door locks at the treasurer's office and issue new keys in 2009.
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Postage$105For postage on legal filings that prosecutors mailed to the Ohio Supreme Court.
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Legal fees$100To pay Wickens, Herzer, Panza, Cook & Batista Co. for the law firm's miscellaneous expenses to represent Zeigler in 2011.
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Equipment/supplies$75For a new tax stamp that is used when a taxpayer tenders a payment. The previous stamp included Zeigler’s name. The stamp now reads “Stark County Treasurer.”
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Equipment/supplies$65For new business cards that reflect Zumbar's name as treasurer.
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Equipment/supplies$22To change the front door locks at the treasurer's office and issue new keys when Treasurer Zumbar took office. Total bill was $572, but the bulk of it was for a new lock between the office area and the vault because an employee had misplaced a key.
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Total cost to taxpayers$526,760
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Sources: Stark County Auditor's Office, Treasurer's Office, Prosecutor's Office, Commissioner's Office, Common Pleas Court, Repository archives
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