Statement of Common Cause Delaware Executive Director Claire Snyder-Hall
We appreciate the hard work of both the Grand Jury and the trial jury.
We are both angered and saddened by the betrayal of the public trust that is evidenced by today’s conviction of the Auditor for conflict of interest (nepotism), structuring contractor payments to avoid procurement rules, and official misconduct.
Delawareans shouldn’t have to wonder whose interests our elected officials serve. We deserve to have confidence that our tax dollars are being well-spent, and that our government officials are serving our interests, not the interests of themselves, their families, or their cronies.
This public corruption case demonstrates the need for an Office of the Inspector General, dedicated to searching out waste, fraud, abuse, corruption, and other conduct that is harmful to the public interest – and to helping recover misspent or inappropriately paid funds. Delaware organizations have been working to establish an IG for years. A bill with strong bipartisan support was introduced this year, but unfortunately, it did not get a vote.
Violations of the public trust are very serious offenses in a democracy. We trust the court will impose the sentence that is deserved in this case. And we know that Common Cause Delaware will continue working to strengthen ethics laws, until they are as clear and tough as they need to be.