Saturday, October 28, 2006

BWC refuses to release internal audit; Dann to file suit

Columbus -- Today State Senator Marc Dann, the Democratic nominee for Ohio Attorney General, announced that Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) Director William Mabe will not release an internal audit requested by Dann as part of a public records request.

The audit, which was not released, allegedly shows that some employer’s BWC rates and assessments were reduced after complaining to their state legislators about the high premiums they were paying.

Senator Dann, who first asked for this audit to be released at the beginning of October, spoke directly to Director Mabe earlier this week and again asked for the release of the audit.

At a press conference held in Columbus, Senator Dann announced he would file suit against the BWC for the audit under the Ohio public records law: “The audit I requested holds key information into serious allegations at the BWC and is a public record,” said Senator Dann. “I am disappointed that Director Mabe decided to withhold the audit and now I will move forward with a public records lawsuit. Ohioans deserve to know if some employers were receiving special treatment on their rates and premiums.”

On October 4, 2006 Senator Dann requested by letter all the documents related to the audit on premium rates and assessments paid by public and private employers as part of Ohio’s public records law. Keith Elliot reportedly completed the internal audit requested by Dann. Elliot, an internal Auditor within the BWC, recently testified in the Noe ‘Coingate’ trial as a witness for the prosecution and is credited for raising questions within the BWC about their investment in rare coins.

“As a State Senator I have fought to make public records open and accessible in this state,” Senator Dann said. “As Attorney General I will work to make state agencies open and accountable for their public records. No citizen should have to sue the Governor or the BWC to get information that is part of a public record. Today I will continue my effort to uncover the truth.”

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