The Norman Transcript


December 22, 2012

County’s legal bill approaches $70K



The jail, which opened to prisoners in February 2012, could hold as many as 580 prisoners if all of the jail “pods” were opened.

As of June 30, 2012, there was $18,990,420 held in reserve, according to a review of the bond issue audit.

On Feb. 16, the IRS informed the county that it was going to audit the $52 million bond expenditure. In November, IRS agent Kurt J. Ochsner came to Cleveland County and interviewed county officials. Ten months after being notified of the audit, the county still has not received a report from the IRS.

Waterman said that an IRS audit taking that long doesn’t necessarily indicate that there is anything wrong. He said his experience indicates that lately the IRS has been concerned with funding for detention centers across the country. County officials contend that the IRS audit is “routine” and not out of the ordinary, although it follows on the heels of a taxpayer petition questioning where all the bond money has gone

Justice Authority trustes to date have approved the following major expenditures, according to records provided to The Transcript.

· $25,387,914 paid to Timberlake Construction for building of the jail.

· $1,615,107 paid to Ben Graves Architects In Partnership (AIP).

· $1,269,945 paid to Dolese Brothers Inc.

· $1,046,600 paid to Glenn Floyd Law firm for services as bond counsel.

· $520,000 to R. Lindsay Bailey, counsel for the justice authority.

· $520,000 to Marshall Hawkins, financial adviser with Governmental Finance of Oklahoma Inc., a private firm.

· $393,471 paid to Wes Brannon, who served as the county’s on-site manager.

Other costs include:

· $2,231,544 for jail maintenance and operations as of June 30.

· $1,240,711 paid to buy land for the jail.

Executive Editor Andy Rieger contributed to this report.


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