Wagner: LCB made poor judgement

    Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner says the state Liquor Control Board didn’t break any laws by awarding an employee-training contract to a company owned by the husband of one of its regional managers.

    Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner says the state Liquor Control Board didn’t break any laws by awarding an employee-training contract to a company owned by the husband of one of its regional managers. But Wagner says the decision was a case of “poor judgment.”

    Listen:
    [audio: 090429sdaudit.mp3]

    The LCB got a lot of unwanted attention when it handed out a $173,000 staff development contract to consulting firm Solutions 21, whose owner is married to the board’s western regional manager.

    Wagner says that relationship created the appearance of a conflict of interest, but he was also concerned by the fact Solutions 21 bid $173,000, while the two other finalists submitted amounts of $453,000 and $1.2 million.

    Wagner: When you get a sufficient number of bids on any proposal you really should see some dollar volumes that are pretty close to each other. And as I say to all of you today, look at these bids. Do you see any dollar volume that are close to each other? It’s just not there.

    Wagner says the LCB should have started the bidding process over or carried out the training in-house, though Board chairman PJ Stapleton says there wasn’t any legal justification for rejecting the Solutions 21 offer.

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