When does a company’s “goodwill” create a conflict of interest?

Someone sent me a copy of a flier for the Caroline County Optimist Club’s Winter Sports Festival. For those unaware, the Director of the Optimist Club is County Administrator Percy Ashcraft and the club’s President is Percy Ashcraft’s wife. Its Recording Secretary is Karen Jenkins, who is the county’s “public information officer” as well.

Now, if you look at the sponsors of this event, you might recognize some of the names:

  • Amerigas
  • Jarrell Properties, Inc.
  • Utility Services, Inc.
  • Diversified Ambulance Billing
  • Clark’s Cut II
  • World View Solutions
  • E.M. Gray & Son, Inc.
  • Dominion Resources, Inc.
  • Massey Enterprises
  • Purvis Ford
  • Rosner Toyota
  • Virginia Sports Complex
  • Computer-Telephone Technologies
  • Linda Perry Taxes

Jarrell Properties, Inc., whose commercial rezoning application was approved by the Board of Supervisors on January 26th of this year.

Diversified Ambulance Billing? Those are the folks responsible for billing county citizens for the EMS fee program. It also turns out that they’ve fleeced county residents out of $39,000 over the last two years.

In addition, while I can’t find any connection between “Massey Enterprises” and the county, their offices are one suite over from where Diversified Ambulance Billing is located in Virginia Beach.

Clark’s Cut II is the controversial sand/gravel extraction site off of Route 17 whose approval by the Board of Supervisors has prompted legal action against the company as well as the Board (full disclosure: I supported that special exemption permit application and still do).

World View Solutions? They’re a geographic information system (GIS) provider…who just happens to be doing the county’s GIS project.

Virginia Sports Complex, who in 2009 was granted a special exemption permit to serve alcohol at their facility.

So, when does the “goodwill” from these companies become a conflict of interest (or create the appearance of a conflict of interest), especially when the group receiving the money is ran by the County Administrator and his wife?

And as a side note, is the County Administrator’s Office so pressed for work they are selling tickets to an event for a third-party, non-governmental organization? I smell some room for budget cuts there, maybe we can rededicate that money to something important, like education.

Cross-posted at Virginia Virtucon.

3 Comments

  1. LarryG says:

    you’re worried about conflict-of-interest on this scale?

    get a life fella ..

    go to VPAP and then you can really be concerned about “conflicts”….

  2. Political donations are required to be itemized and presented in reports to the state Larry, this? Not so much.

  3. william e. sparks says:

    My father used to be the county administrator of Caroline.HMM, lets see I don’t remember dear old dad setting something up like this!Oh, wait dad actually had some integrity ROFL.

    note-Larry if you are so concerned about Tims life lets ask you a question about your life.How are you tied to Ashcraft?You are a jerk…

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