– Rep. Bud Cook (R-Washington/Fayette) held a press conference titled “Come On Man, it’s the People’s Money” on the Washington County Courthouse steps this afternoon to officially release his findings in his five-year Local Share Account (LSA) investigation. Leading up to the press conference, Cook released three editorials to help those unfamiliar with LSA understand the intricacies of the grant selection process. They are available to read at RepCook.com/NewsGroup/Press-Releases
“Since I was elected, I have always pushed for fair, accountable and transparent government. Wanting that for our LSA selection process is no different,” said Cook. “This is public money. This selection process is supposed to be straightforward. LSA grants are beneficial to our community, but only if the projects they are used for are selected fairly.”
During the press conference, Cook detailed the facts of LSA, including the millions of unaccounted funds dating back to 2015 and legal fees fighting right-to-know requests paid with taxpayer money; the background of legalized gaming and how it affected property taxes; his seven right-to-know requests to the Redevelopment Authority of Washington County; and actions taken during the five-year investigation.
Cook has three questions left unanswered by the Washington County Commissioners, who are on the deciding board of how to distribute funds:
How can the LSA process be fair if it is not accountable and transparent?
Why would the commissioners spend $30,000 in legal fees to block an incumbent representative from information that should be public?
Why are the commissioners refusing to address the apparent conflict of interest in grant selection?
“After five years of pushing for answers, I am turning all my findings over to the Washington County commissioners and the public,” Cook concluded. “I look forward to seeing if changes are made to the LSA grant selection process. The people of the great 49th deserve transparency from their local elected officials.”
To view the press conference in its entirety, visit RepCook.com/Video
. To review all LSA materials released by Cook, visit RepCook.com/LSAInfo