Athens Review, Athens, Texas

Breaking News

In the News

June 21, 2013

ESD to seek audit of Kerens VFD

KERENS — The Emergency Services District #1 will be asking for an audit from the Kerens Volunteer Fire Department, in the wake of revelations that the small department had some money stolen from its bank account.

The department’s former treasurer, Kaell Mullen, a volunteer himself, has been arrested and charged with theft by a public servant.

An investigation by the Kerens Police Department determined that about $2,900 had been siphoned off the department’s bank account using a debit card. It’s unclear how much of that money was from private donations, from grants from the state or was from the Emergency Services District #1. The ESD contracts with Kerens VFD and Powell VFD to provide fire response to the southeastern part of the county.

“They’re taking the steps they need to now,” said David Foreman, who is chairman of the ESD #1. The ESD recommended a specific lawyer to the fire department, and they’ve agreed to turn over their books to a professional bookkeeper, Foreman said.

“And there will be an audit,” he said.

The theft escaped the notice of the fire department’s board because they’d been given spreadsheets instead of the actual bank statements, according to Fire Chief Charlie Bush.

The ESD board has a series of financial controls that would be useful for Kerens to use, as well, Foreman said.

Among the controls the ESD uses are not using a debit card, not buying off the Internet unless it’s through an established account, not allowing checks to be written unless they’re signed by more than one person, requiring a board vote for any expenses, and requiring more than one person to oversee the financial statements.

“I think we’re going to get the accountability and transparency we need,” Foreman said. “Because of these problems, a good man’s name is tarnished. Kaell’s a good man. And Kerens is a good fire department with a lot of good volunteers, and we want to keep it that way.”

The goal for both agencies is accountability, transparency and “a team concept to provide the citizens with fire protection. And if we can’t have that, then changes will have to be made,” Foreman said.

The problem isn’t just Kerens’ problem, Foreman said. “It’s ours, also. We’ve got to make sure it’s right.

“We just want to make sure money’s not being wasted and we’ve got volunteers who can get in a truck and go fight a fire,” Foreman said.

—————

Janet Jacobs may be reached via e-mail at jjacobs@corsicanadailysun.com. Want to “sound off” to this article? E-mail: Soundoff@corsicanadailysun.com

1
Text Only
In the News
  • Parsons Athens woman confesses to killing daughter

    Stacie Marie Parsons, 25, walked into the Athens Police Department at 8:46 a.m. Monday and confessed to killing her 4-year-old daughter.

    July 21, 2014 2 Photos

  • g000258000000000000f99cd4724578efa27c155fb3a1dcc7c68e3109e5.jpg Suspects sought in armed robberies in Corsicana

    Corsicana Police are looking for suspects in a pair of armed robberies the past week.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Feds: Texas voting maps deliberately discriminated

     The U.S. Justice Department told judges Monday that Texas lawmakers carefully crafted electoral maps marginalizing minority voters despite the state's exploding Hispanic population in a deliberate effort to racially discriminate and protect conservative incumbents.

    July 14, 2014

  • Four children among six dead in suburban Houston shooting

      A father opened fire at a suburban Houston home Wednesday, killing four of his children as well as two adults who were with them, and critically wounding his 15-year-old daughter, authorities said.

    July 10, 2014

  • Corsicana firefighter killed in one-car crash

     An off-duty Corsicana fireman was killed and his two young sons were injured in a one-car crash on FM 709 north of Dawson Tuesday night.

    An off-duty Corsicana fireman was killed and his two young sons were injured in a one-car crash on FM 709 north of Dawson Tuesday night.

    Justice of the Peace Jackie Freeland identified the deceased fireman as Louis Lachney, 46. He was a Lieutenant with the Corsicana Fire Department.

    The crash was reported at 11:27 p.m. Tuesday and occurred  at a sharp curve in the roadway on FM 709 about two miles north of State Highway 31 near Dawson.

    DPS Sgt. Thomas Moore, supervisor at the crash site, said Lachney’s convertible Mazda was traveling north on FM 709 and failed to negotiate a sharp curve, leaving the roadway and overturning several times.

    Moore said Lachney and his two sons who were passengers in the car were all ejected from the vehicle. Moore said the three were apparently not wearing seat belts.

    The two injured boys walked to the roadway following the crash where they were discovered by a passing motorist, who notified law enforcement of the crash.

    Moore said the two boys were transported by air ambulance to a Dallas hospital. He said they were in serious but stable condition when transported from the crash site.

    DPS Trooper LaTonya Daniels is investigating the crash. Corsicana EMS, volunteer firefighters, and Navarro County Sheriff's Office deputies assisted at the crash site. - See more at: http://www.corsicanadailysun.com/local/x611407136/Corsicana-firefighter-killed-in-one-car-crash#sthash.cKzZVvbj.dpuf

    July 9, 2014

  • RNC to be held in Cleveland

    A Republican National Committee panel is recommending Cleveland to host the party's 2016 presidential convention.

    July 8, 2014

  • ADR logo.tif Border money request won't include policy change

    July 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • Killer of 2 Henderson County deputies loses appeal

     An East Texas man sentenced to death for a shootout that left two Henderson County sheriff's deputies dead seven years ago has lost a federal court appeal, moving him a step closer to execution.

    June 30, 2014

  • Bond set at $1M for ex-cop in suitcase deaths

    ELKHORN, Wis. (AP) — Two women whose remains were found stuffed in suitcases dropped along a rural Wisconsin highway may have died accidentally, perhaps during consensual sex, the defense attorney for a former police officer suspected in their deaths said Friday.

    June 27, 2014

  • Texas DMV prepares for sticker shock of losing inspection tag

    In less than nine months Texas windshields are going to start looking different, and Department of Motor Vehicles officials are gearing up to avoid a sticky situation when car owners transition from having two state-required tags to one.

    June 25, 2014

Biz Marquee
AP Video
Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Obama Voices Concern About Casualties in Mideast Diplomacy Intensifies Amid Mounting Gaza Toll AP Exclusive: American Beaten in Israel Speaks Obama Protects Gay, Transgender Workers Raw: Gaza Rescuers Search Rubble for Survivors Raw: International Team Inspects MH17 Bodies Raw: 25 Family Members Killed in Gaza Airstrike US Teen Beaten in Mideast Talks About Ordeal 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success