Victor Valley College

Citizens Bond Oversight members allege money illegally spent

Brooke Self, Staff Writer
Posted Aug. 31, 2014 @ 10:30 am
Updated Aug 31, 2014 at 10:42 AM

VICTORVILLE — A member of the Victor Valley College Measure JJ Citizens Bond Oversight Committee has filed a complaint with the San Bernardino County District Attorney about bond funds he believes were illegally spent.

Marshall Kagen said he also is looking at filing a citizen’s lawsuit against the college. Kagan, a retired accountant, and fellow Citizens Bond Oversight Committee member Larry Hoover say that approximately $40 million of the $53 million reportedly used to pay Certificates of Participation (COP) is unaccounted for.

“I’m not trying to make trouble,” Hoover said, “just trying to see where that $40 million went to. The Citizens Bond Oversight Committee is supposed to confirm that the money was spent. You don’t assume anything; you don’t take anybody’s word for it. That (COP expenditure) list leaves the reader to assume.”

Christopher Lee, a spokesman for the District Attorney’s office, confirmed that a complaint was received by the Public Integrity Unit. The complaint is currently under review, Lee said.

College officials and the former Bond Oversight Committee chair contend there has been no misuse of funds, and they say the men are speaking about money that was spent before the 2008 bond measure was approved by Victorville voters.

About $53 million of the $139 million in bonds sold under Measure JJ were used in 2009 to pay off Certificates of Participation originally issued in 1997 for campus construction projects, according to college records. Those projects included the building of the VVC Student Activities Center and a remodel of the campus’ counseling and administration buildings.

A total of $3 million of the $53 million in COP money collected in 1997 was paid into the General Fund, according to the “Summary of Expenditures” posted at www.vvc.edu/measurejj.

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