It Can Wait: City Delays Stimulus Report Again

By Matt Rodewald

Published 08/12 2013 10:26PM

Updated 08/12 2013 11:04PM

ROCKFORD--Waiting is the hardest part, but for those trying to get to the bottom of why the federal government is asking the city to repay $300,000 in stimulus funds, they're going to have to wait a little longer.

Mayor Larry Morrissey was set to deliver a report to the city council on the matter, but for the second straight week he put it on hold.

"Frankly, I was too aggressive when I said it needed to be done in two weeks," Morrissey said.

The Inspector General's audit says the city's at fault because it improperly handled the funds, documented them incorrectly, spent them outside of the time period allowed, or spent the funding on items not sanctioned by stimulus rules.

Problem is for 5th Ward Alderman Venita Hervey is that there were no rules.

"When the stimulus came out, it came out very quickly," says Hervey, who serves as the Chairman of the Finance and Personnel Committee. "There were no written guidelines for a lot of the money."

Morrissey says he's seen a first draft of the report, but wants to wait until all staff members have cycled through vacations and have contributed to the report in full. The final copy is expected to be completed in a few days and more than likely will finally be presented at the next city council meeting on Monday, August 19th.

"I'm going to review what I get from our staff," says Morrissey. "I'll release just as soon as it's ready."

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