April 23, 2014

Medina
Cloudy
36°F

Visiting judge will hear Stepp’s suit against auditor

MEDINA — A lawsuit brought against the Ohio Auditor’s Office by suspended Medina Schools Superintendent Randy Stepp will not be heard by Medina County judges.

Common pleas Judges James L. Kimbler and Christopher J. Collier recused themselves from the case almost immediately after Stepp filed the suit this month.

They said in a Nov. 14 journal entry they were passing the case on to a visiting judge “to avoid the appearance of impropriety.” The Ohio Supreme Court will appoint a visiting judge.

Stepp is suing state Auditor David Yost and the Medina school board. He accuses Yost’s office of performing a biased and, therefore, illegal audit into his spending from a “carryover” fund held by the Medina County Schools’ Educational Service Center.

His suit says the audit was biased because William J. Ward, who worked as the audit’s senior manager, is a Medina resident and sits on Project: LEARN’s board of trustees. Project: LEARN hired school board President Karla Robinson as its executive director while the audit was ongoing.

The audit, released Oct. 22 after a six-month investigation, found that Stepp was responsible for more than $4,100 worth of illegal expenses he’s been ordered to pay back.

The audit also found nearly $1 million was spent without proper authorization, half for which the “proper public purpose was unclear.”

The board is in the process of firing Stepp.

Contact reporter Nick Glunt at (330) 721-4048 or nglunt@medina-gazette.com.

  • MommaLou

    Its such a shame that all that money did not go to the children. Anything that comes out of that mans mouth is a lie lie lie. He and the board and those who benefited from the fund should all be fined and do some jail time.