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Friday, July 18, 2014

YOU CAN ROLL A BABY IN FLOUR, BUT THAT DOESN'T MAKE IT A POLAR BEAR: Grand Traverse Academy's Classification Of Missing $2.38 Million As "Prepaid Expense" Debunked; Ingersoll Overpayment Has No "Future Value"

JULY 18 at 12:30pm

While Steven Ingersoll's $2.38 million dollar overpayment to his Smart Schools Management, Inc. during the 2013 fiscal year was classified in last year's Grand Traverse Academy financial audit report as a "Prepaid Expense", that creative accounting trick no longer applies.

Here's why: there's absolutely no value for future accounting periods. Although I disagree with the classification of a multi-million dollar overpayment as a "prepaid expense", I'm not an accountant.

However, when Steven Ingersoll tipped off the Academy Board that he was about to be indicted by the feds, paving the way for Mark Noss to take over operations, the money ceased being considered an asset described in the audit report as a "non-spendable fund balance of $2,338,980" and became a liability.

Even if you accept the repayment scheme cobbled together by the Board in the wake of the overpayment disclosure, it still leaves at least $1.6 million dollars unpaid.

So when the "Prepaid Plan" shows up on today's agenda, and the pussyfooting begins, you'll know that the repayment plan is not current.

And with the feds announcing a plan to seek assets, post conviction, in a superseding indictment filed April 23 in the Ingersoll case, it's highly unlikely that any money will be recovered from the head of Smart Schools Management, Inc.

Ingersoll allegedly used part of the construction loan proceeds, backed by the U. S. Department of Agriculture and diverted to his joint, personal Fifth Third Bank account, to "reduce his indebtedness to his Traverse City charter school, the Grand Traverse Academy." It's expected that because those "tainted assets" would be considered "readily available" under applicable federal statutes (for example, in a Grand Traverse Academy bank account) they would be subject to a clawback by the feds.

So when you're listening during this afternoon's Board meeting, ask yourself this question: is it really a polar bear...or just a floury baby?

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