The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Local Politics

May 31, 2014

Ken de la Bastide: Is politics behind ISP probe of Rodney Chamberlain?

Depending on who is asked, mayoral politics may behind an ISP investigation of Anderson City Councilman Rodney Chamberlain.

Chamberlain believes politics could be behind the investigation because he is being mentioned as a potential mayoral candidate in 2015 against incumbent Republican Mayor Kevin Smith.

Smith said politics are not involved and the investigation was started after officials were contacted by a local citizen concerning the now closed Men’s Basketball League account.

Anderson requested the investigation of Chamberlain over the use of funds from the league.

The Herald Bulletin was denied a request through the Freedom of Information Act for a copy of the letter from the city to the Indiana State Police asking for a police investigation.

The newspaper did request and receive a copy of a receipt from the Anderson Parks Department for the transfer of funds from the basketball league in the amount of $1,603.07 on Feb. 13, 2013.

After an initial investigation by ISP found no wrongdoing, Anderson city officials asked for a review from the Indiana State Board of Accounts.

Madison County Prosecutor Rodney Cummings said no criminal charges are anticipated against Chamberlain, but that guidelines established by the Indiana State Board of Accounts were not followed.

“What he did was improper,” Cummings said of the account created for the operation of the Men’s Basketball League. “Had they (State Board of Accounts) known about the account, it would have been a violation.

“You can’t have accounts that no one knew about,” he said. “The controller’s office should have known about the account. Clearly the procedure was improper. There were no checks and balances.”

Smith said a private citizen notified his office of an unauthorized city account, which led to the investigation request with ISP.

“We wanted to be above board and impartial,” he said. “We wanted to hand it over to an agency outside of city government and politics.”

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