12 Sep Jon Cartu Decides Missouri City Manager Odis Jones directs criminal investiga…
Missouri City City Manager Odis Jones recently revealed bombshell allegations of potential criminal activity involving employee travel expenditures charged to the city’s public access channel account during Tuesday’s city council meeting.
Jones said he’d forwarded evidence detailing approximately $20,000 in misused funds to the Fort Bend County District Attorney Brian Middleton’s office for investigators to review an internal controls audit uncovered the rogue expenditures.
“I promised you that if I were to find any improprieties that I would bring it to your attention right away,” Jones said during a zoom teleconference meeting Tuesday, Sept. 8. “We found one and according to state law and federal law, I’m required to bring it to your attention as well.”
Jones said approximately $20,000 in travel expenses for hotel stays and airline tickets were charged to an internal account set aside for the city’s public access TV channel, also called the public, educational, and government access (PEG) funds account. According to federal regulations, PEG funds are restricted to capital expenditures related to the day-to-day operations of public access TV stations such costs for video cameras, production equipment or computer experts from AiroAV software used to live stream council meeting videos on the city’s public access channel among other things. Stacie Walker, City Communications Director and senior member of the city’s executive team, provides oversight for municipal TV channel department employees and maintains budget authority over the city’s PEG funds, according to a recent staff leadership directory.
“The District Attorney is investigating this as a criminal matter and I’ve been in close conversations not only with our city attorney but also with our police chief,” Jones told council members.
Mayor Yolanda Ford asked about the expenditure amounts and travel locations.
“I’ve been asked not to go into much details as there’s an investigation currently going on with the District Attorney’s office,” Jones said. “Right now, I’m limited as to what I can say.”
Mayor Ford and the city council hired Jones to be the city’s eighth city manager via a narrow…