July 24, 2014

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Timesheet irregularities lead to resignation of Mary Taylor aide

COLUMBUS — A top aide to Ohio’s lieutenant governor has resigned after irregularities were found in her timesheets, a spokesman for the office said Friday.

Laura Johnson, chief of staff to Republican Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor, stepped down Thursday at Taylor’s request, said Taylor’s spokesman Chris Brock. Johnson’s administrative assistant also resigned Wednesday.

Records indicate their working hours and parking records do not match, according to Taylor’s office. There were days when both women reported work hours either before entering or after leaving the garage.

Taylor’s office became aware of Johnson’s timesheet irregularities several weeks ago while responding to a public records request made in April by the Democratic-leaning blog Plunderbund, Brock said. The blog asked for payroll records, timesheets and parking logs for Johnson and the assistant.

The matter has been referred to the Ohio inspector general and State Highway Patrol to review. In a memo to those agencies, Taylor’s office said the hours the women’s cars were recorded as being in the office’s parking garage was “significantly less” than the hours they said they had worked in the four-month time period.

Johnson did not immediately respond to messages sent to her Facebook page. A phone number for her was not immediately available.

Johnson had been given some flexibility to work from home when needed after she had a baby in 2011, Brock said.

Taylor said in a written statement Friday that she was disappointed by the discovery of the irregularities.

“As a working mom, I know it’s hard to juggle both family and a job so I’ve tried to be supportive of my own staff as they juggle those demands,” Taylor said. “Unfortunately, the flexibility I’ve tried to show the chief of staff of my personal office hasn’t been appropriately respected and the workings of the office have suffered.”

Taylor, a former state lawmaker from suburban Akron, has served as lieutenant governor since 2011. She and Gov. John Kasich are running for re-election this fall.

  • Razorback Twou

    “Laura Johnson, chief of staff to Republican Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor” The whole partys crooked, stinks from the top down.

    • HankKwah

      That’s funny considering the BS that the liberals and MSM let obama get away with.

      • Razorback Twou

        Are you endorsing this theft ? You must be a Repugnant.

        • HankKwah

          If you can find where I said that, I’ll admit it.

          Otherwise, you can admit your a dumba$$ocrat.

          • Razorback Twou

            Ever hear of an Independent? I can think for myself. Sorry for you.

          • HankKwah

            LMAO

            You’re no independent. Not with THAT kind of thinking. You’re a koolaid-swillin’ liberal. You’ve already shown your true colors. Be adult and mature enough to admit it.

          • Razorback Twou

            My time is to valuable to trade insults with the likes of you. I have a life, again, sorry for you. You should get one and not sit on your computer looking for replys to your classless posts. You never did answer the question. Bye.

          • HankKwah

            I didn’t recognize you for the troll you are. Oops. Nailed to the wall, and so you want to walk away. I’ll pull the nail out for you, but you’ll have that wound for a long time. Wear it as a war casualty, and remember that I gave it to you. Independent Idiot.

        • levtrotsky

          Mark Stewart stole $1700 from the County taxpayers and almost got away with it….where was the outcry & call for a Grand Jury review?

    • golfingirl

      Both political parties have been guilty of theft in office.

      Remove your blinders and see the world as it is. This is not a single party issue.

      At least in this case, the thief was immediately fired and will likely face charges, or be forced to pay it back.

      Didn’t the Democrat FitzGerald do the exact same thing? Let me answer that for you…..Yes he did!

  • golfingirl

    I applaud Mary Taylor and the Republicans for dismissing her.

    Isn’t FitzGerald being asked to turn over his parking records as County Executive of Cuyahoga County, but refuses because he feels it pose be a security threat on his life?

    Could it have been because he really was not on the job? Instead was prepping for his gubernatorial run?

    Now let’s see those FitzGerald parking records!

    The Republicans did it, time for the Democrats to reciprocate.

    • Starryeyes63

      I was thinking along the same line NO excuse, no pandering. The person was fired.

    • HankKwah

      But….but….but…..FitzGerald’s safety would be in jeopardy!!!

    • Stan K

      They call this cleaning out the closet.This is typical pre-campaign grandstanding.Avoiding potentially damaging information from being leaked during campaign battle..It does not surprise me that you took the bait considering your political knowledge… you are learning golfingirl! ,but don’t be so naïve,they probably knew of this for a while.

      • golfingirl

        So, why can we now see FitzGeralds’s parking records?

        Do you really believe he cannot release them, because doing so would jeopardize his life?

        Fact is, she was not on the job and was fired. Republican, or Democrat, she was held accountable and fired.

        You call it politics, I call it doing the right thing.

  • Otter

    Timesheets. Who in the fersnuggies uses timesheets?

    • oldruss

      Many managerial positions, especially those working for an elected official (Lt. Gov. is an elected official, like mayor of a city, or judge of the common pleas court, etc.) use timesheets. These managers don’t punch a time clock like an assembly line worker, but nevertheless, are expected to self-report the hours they are in the office. Whether or not these positions even require the managers to work X number of hours per day or not, filing out a time sheet with incorrect hours is the gravamen of this matter. It could be falsification.

      Now, with that said, where are FitzGerald’s time records that are the subject of one or more public records requests?

      • Otter

        Still a bit old school, I have always worked in managerial positions, we didn’t punch a time clock, but we had ID’s that we swiped when we entered or left the building. Pretty simple to keep track of who was there, and when. Filling out a timesheet with incorrect hours, getting paid for time not worked is stealing, plain and simple.

        • oldruss

          What you have to understand is that many professional managers, especially those working for elected officials, are not required to work any specific number of hours per day or per week. They are SALARIED employees; and at least when I worked for a city government in a salaried position, I sure as hell worked more than 40 hours per week, thank you very much. I performed the tasks that were assigned to me by my boss, regardless of how long it took to complete.

          • Otter

            What you need to understand is that I do not like being talked down to. I was what you call a professional, SALARIED employee, I know what an elected official is. I too sure as hell worked more than 40 hours per week, and got paid for 40, thank you very much. Do you think it’s okay for people working for elected officials to write their own pay check? There is no reason why they shouldn’t “punch a time clock like an assembly line worker”. Allowing anyone to self report the time they are in the office is inviting theft, I wonder how many more people are doing it, and haven’t gotten caught, yet.

          • oldruss

            What theft? These professional, salaried employees working for elected officials get paid the same salary whether they work 40 hours/week or 60 hours/week. Now, if you’re implying that they are not doing their jobs because they aren’t “in the office” from 8:00 in the morning until 5:00 in the afternoon, any lack of work product would be quite apparent to their bosses, who depend upon these salaried employees to get the job done, so they can get reelected. Or, if in private business, so they too can keep their jobs, get promoted, earn bonuses. Accusing these employees of the Lt. Governor’s office of theft, is, well, OTT.

          • Otter

            I never implied anything, All I said was they reported working more hours than they actually worked. The received a paycheck for more hours than they worked. That is stealing. In private business , if you get a 40 hour paycheck, you are in the office 40 hours, or you don’t have a job. They falsified their records, took a pay check they did not earn (by not working the hours they said they did) In private business, they would have been fired, and possibly prosecuted, but because they are Government employees it’s okay with you. Got it, nuff said.