Cronyism Scandal Week 3: New Report Shows Josh Mandel Favored Own Appointees For “Large Raises”

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Cronyism Scandal Week 3: New Report Shows Josh Mandel Favored Own Appointees For “Large Raises”

Toledo Blade Report Uncovers Holdovers From Previous Administration Received Much Smaller Pay Increases

COLUMBUS, OHIO – After the Dayton Daily News report that Ohio Treasurer Senate candidate Josh Mandel went back on the central promise of his 2010 campaign and surrounded himself with political cronies in the Treasurer’s office, the Toledo Blade has uncovered that Mandel took his favoritism a step further and favored his own hires over Boyce holdovers for raises at the Treasurer’s office.

The Blade details how Mandel “has given his staff appointees large raises since he took office while awarding more modest raises to the employees he inherited when he became treasurer a year ago.” The report found that raises for Mandel’s hires ranged from $250 to $1,153 per pay period, while the six holdover employees from the previous administration who received the largest raises saw pay increases ranging from only $147 to $441.

Josh Mandel’s Cronyism: A Series Of Damaging Reports

This latest revelation surrounding Josh Mandel’s political cronyism in the Treasurer’s office comes on the heels of a series of damaging reports about Mandel’s political cronyism. After the initial Dayton Daily News piece, the Huffington Post released a stunning report showing that Mandel’s Director of Debt Management was so unqualified for his position that he had to be sent to a beginner’s course on the subject he was overseeing.

Last week, the Dayton Daily News reported that the Ohio Democratic Party filed their seventh public records request in 12 months for resumes of staffers Mandel has hired since taking office. Mandel has either refused to respond or provided inadequate information, leaving Ohioans in the dark about the “qualified financial professionals” Mandel claims to rely on while skipping Board of Deposit meetings to raise cash for his Senate campaign.

“The staggering news about Josh Mandel’s irresponsible hiring practices at the Treasurer’s office just keeps coming while Ohio taxpayers are left wondering why they were forced to foot the bill for his political cronyism,” said Sadie Weiner, Friends of Sherrod Brown spokesperson. “After breaking his promise to hire qualified financial professionals, he turned around and used taxpayer money to lavish hefty raises on his own hires while employees from the previous administration saw almost no movement in pay. This is yet another example that Josh Mandel is ignoring his job and can’t be trusted by middle class families in Ohio.”

BACKGROUND

As Ohio Treasurer Mandel Gave Large Raises To His Appointees While Awarding Modest Raises To The Employees He Inherited.  In April 2012, The Toledo Blade reported “Josh Mandel, Ohio treasurer of state, has given his staff appointees large raises since he took office while awarding more modest raises to the employees he inherited when he became treasurer a year ago.”  The Blade also noted “Six Mandel political appointees received raises ranging from $250 to $1,153 per two-week pay period since the time he took office.  In the same period, raises for the six highest-paid holdovers from former Democratic Treasurer Kevin Boyce ranged from $147 to $441 per pay period. [Toledo Blade, 04/16/12]

During 2010 Campaign For State Treasurer, Mandel Repeatedly Criticized Kevin Boyce For Appointing Politically Connected People Into Key Positions…And Promised To Operate Differently If Elected.  In March 2012, The Dayton Daily News reported “Mandel’s hires stand out because of the strong stance the then state representative took against incumbent Democrat Kevin Boyce’s hiring practices during the heated 2010 race for treasurer.  Mandel repeatedly criticized Boyce for appointing politically connected people into key slots, and pledged to operate differently if elected to the office that oversees billions of dollars in investments and bond deals.” [Dayton Daily News, 03/31/12]

Mandel: “Regardless, Cronyism Is Bad.” In October 2010, in an interview with the Dix Editorial Board, Josh Mandel said, “You know regardless, cronyism is bad, and a hallmark of our campaign, one of the main messages we’ve had in our campaign is restoring character and integrity to the treasurer’s office.” [Marc Kovac, Ohio Capital Blog, 10/5/10]

Mandel Hired Six Campaign Staffers To Positions Ranging From Debt Management And Policy Advising To Community Outreach.  In March 2012, The Dayton Daily News reported “To see if Mandel was fulfilling his pledge not to hire political friends the Daily News reviewed personnel files and other records from the treasurer’s office.”  The Dayton Daily News went on to note that Mandel “…hired six campaign workers whose average age is 26 and assigned them duties ranging from debt management to policy-advising to community outreach.”  [Dayton Daily News, 03/31/12]

Mandel’s Debt Management Director, Joe Aquilino, Attended A Conference Tailored For Those New To The Subject Of Debt Management.  In April 2012, The Huffington Post reported “Days after being accused of hiring young, inexperienced staffers for key positions in the state Treasury, new evidence shows that Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, the Republican nominee for the state Senate race, dispatched a top aide to a beginner’s course in the subject he was overseeing. A roster of attendees for a seminar on the fundamentals of municipal bond law, held at the April 2011 National Association of Bond Lawyers, shows that Joe Aquilino — Mandel’s debt management director at the time — attended the conference. The seminar is tailored for those new to the subject.” [Huffington Post, 04/05/12]

 

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Paid for by Friends of Sherrod Brown