Recently a resident posted a report online entitled “Pigs in Suits.” The report makes numerous allegations of perceived corruption of Eagle Mountain City elected officials and staff, as well naming a long list of others he identifies as being complicit, including: Council members, City attorney, Utah County attorney, State Auditor, State records committee, Daily Herald, Deseret News, Crossroads Journal, Provo Mayor, Orem Mayor, Lehi Mayor, Mapleton Mayor, Utah County Sheriff, Utah County Commissioners, Utah County Chamber, Herriman City Councilmembers, Utah County Association of Realtors, and the Utah Valley Home Builders Association. The author has made claims of illegal activity against the City before and his allegations were unfounded by the State Auditor and Utah County Attorney.
Much of the allegations in the report center around City credit card records from 2010-2013. I’ll provide a brief overview to attempt to address common questions.
There is no evidence of City credit cards being used for personal use as the author claims. Many of the restaurant charges cited in the report were for monthly employee birthday lunches, a budgeted expense that was eliminated in 2012. Other budgeted items related to the restaurant charges include $300-700 per department (depending on size of department) for meetings and conference meals. The City also budgets for food for the Senior Citizens Council activities and dinner for City Council meetings. Council meeting dinners are usually made on site at City Hall to provide a meal for those who are here working through the end of the meetings; typically between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. City events also have food related expenses.
The charges at stores cover a variety of budgeted expenses-Pony Express Days (including prizes), which has been downsized in recent years, other City events, and a clothing allowance for employees. For field workers, $400 is budgeted to cover all protective gear. Boots, pants, coveralls, jackets, etc. This is standard practice for many occupations which require working outside in environments which can quickly wear out clothes. Office Staff are provided with $100 for shirts which must have an embroidered City Logo put on them.
There are certain purchases that do not align with my definition of necessary expenses just as you may not agree with some of the purchases. However, the expenses were budgeted and legal. I care about today, and tomorrow and the next day. It takes far too much energy looking at yesterday when nothing can be done to change it. We can however chart a course that we feel is appropriate for today. That is exactly what we have done and will continue to do as we move forward.
Recognizing that some who read the report will have questions, I am going to dedicate my evening to answering any questions you may have. Please post any questions you have in the comments.