For immediate release:
Oct. 15, 2013
INDIANAPOLIS - Below is the text of a letter from House Democratic Leader Scott Pelath of Michigan City delivered today to Inspector General David Thomas:
Dear Mr. Thomas:
I respectfully request an update on your investigation of the "A-F" scandal involving former Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett. Exactly two months ago, your August 15 correspondence confirmed that you received an "A-F" ethics allegation under your jurisdiction.
Given the length of time that has elapsed, have you now developed a specific timetable for the completion of your investigative work? If so, when do you plan to issue any findings and conclusions?
If you still have no specific timetable—or at least some tentative target dates—what details and obstacles are preventing your progress? Are your staff resources sufficient for the job? Are you receiving adequate cooperation and support from other state agencies? Is there anything the legislature should be doing to assist?
At the behest of key legislative leaders, the findings of two "A-F" scandal reviewers, Bill Sheldrake and John Grew, already have reached the public's ears. Working on a volunteer basis, Sheldrake and Grew took approximately a month to complete their work.
Frankly, I have no way of knowing if their work was too hasty or your office is too hampered. Perhaps your office may take an interest in questions of motive—something Sheldrake and Grew were not charged with—so any comparison is imperfect. But a detailed status report will sustain confidence in your progress.
Thank you as always for your service to the people of Indiana. I look forward to hearing from you.
Scott D. Pelath
Indiana House Democratic Leader