* We’re getting to this a bit late in the game, but here’s the Sun-Times’ take…
A Snapchat text from Wrigley Field during state worker hours and a pair of sexually harrassing text messages to female co-workers were among the new details to emerge Wednesday in the firings of three high-level staffers in state Treasurer Dan Rutherford’s office.
The Executive Ethics Commission Wednesday released a report by David Wells, executive inspector general for the treasurer’s office, into an alleged scheme to circumvent the time-keeping system in Rutherford’s office.
Wells identified Patrick Carlson, George Daglas and Ashvin Lad, all three senior members in Rutherford’s management team, and said all three violated the “trust and integrity” of Rutherford and state taxpayers by their conduct. […]
“All three positions are senior staff positions within the office of state treasurer, appointed by Treasurer Rutherford. These individuals are in leadership positions of a state agency wherein integrity and trust are key character traits. By their participation in this fraudulent time keeping scheme, whether it was ‘every day’ or ‘one time only,’ their actions violated the trust and integrity of Treasurer Rutherford, the office of state treasurer, and most importantly, the trust of the taxpayers of the state of Illinois,” Wells’ report concluded.
* The Tribune has a different sort of angle…
Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford fired three top aides who were accused of falsifying timekeeping records, but the former employees say they were targeted in retaliation for participating in a probe looking into allegations of sexual harassment and political pressure made against their boss. […]
In written responses released by the inspector general, Carlson, Daglas and Lad say there are several inaccuracies in the report and question the legitimacy of the investigation, saying the inspector general did not follow proper protocol and inform them of the right to have interviews recorded.
Carlson said in his response that he at no point admitted to being a part of the scheme, and accused Wells of having an “accusatory tone and demeanor” during interviews. Carlson wrote that Wells’ behavior matches that of other treasurer’s office staff members and was “designed to purposely and willfully create a hostile workplace environment and was done in retaliation” for statements Carlson made to another investigator hired by Rutherford to vet allegations brought against him by a former employee that the treasurer engaged in a pattern of sexual harassment and political pressure.
Lad also questioned Wells’ investigation, saying the ethics officer relied on statements from “co-workers who were set to find ways to retaliate against me for cooperating with an internal investigation.” Daglas did not say he felt he was being retaliated against in his formal response to the report, but told the Tribune on Wednesday that the trio was unfairly targeted for participating in the Rutherford probe. Carlson and Lad declined to comment further, deferring to their written responses.