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Corrupt County Employee Given Award By County Executive

By Greg L | 26 May 2009 | Crime, Prince William County | 6 Comments

The now-terminated Deputy Chief Information officer for Prince William County and subject of an FBI investigation for bid-rigging and possibly other charges of corruption turns out to be the very person that County Executive Craig Gerhart singled out for an award honoring work performance award last June, which is rightly raising some eyebrows.  Insiders tell me that these awards are often bureaucratic perks ladled out to cronies who are supportive of Gerhart’s empire building, and rarely have anything to do with actual performance, being almost entirely driven by politics.  This apparent payback definitely raises questions about the level of involvement by the County Executive in this ongoing public corruption investigation.

From the News & Messenger:

While employed, Gupta received county recognition for his work performance. In June 2008, county executive Craig Gerhart awarded several employees for “exceptional contributions to the county government and excellent service to Prince William County residents,” according to a press release on the county’s Web site.

“The county executive’s awards are presented annually to selected employees whose exemplary per-formance sets a standard of excellence for the county government and demonstrates that leadership can originate from any level within our government,” the release continues.

Gupta was recognized then as a member of the DRIVE Steering Team that was in charge of revising the county’s merit system, according to the release.

I’m looking forward to seeing Gupta and the others implicated in this probe roll over on Gerhart in exchange for a plea deal.  If they do, I imagine a number of other employees currently being forced into silence will be more interested in sharing what they know with criminal investigators.  Although the stated reason for FBI involvement in what would normally be something handled by the county office of the Commonwealth Attorney is that federal funds were involved, actual involvement in such cases seems to be exceedingly rare, especially when just about any state or local fraud or corruption case involves federal dollars in some way.  There’s quite likely a much more believable explanation for this unusual federal involvement.

Procurement activities within the Office of Information Technology are likely just the tip of the iceberg here, and this is a great opportunity to clean up a long-festering mess.  Although three pretty senior county employees have been identified as targets so far, in the end we might see quite a few more join them.



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6 Comments

  1. I"m just saying... said on 26 May 2009 at 6:01 pm:
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    Being good at your job and being a crook are not mutually exclusive. It’s a bit of a logic leap to connect the fact that he got one of the many “attaboy” awards (cheaper than giving them a raise) as somehow implicating Gerhart. According to your own reporting, he was just one member of a team to get the recognition.

  2. James Young said on 26 May 2009 at 7:13 pm:
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    Greg, I have no way to know if Gerhart is involved in the alleged corruption, but I would be shocked if he were. We have attended church together for more than a decade, and while he may be a man of the Left, I would dispute the blanket assertion that he is personally venal or corrupt.

    And — in all seriousness, and without rancor or ill-will — you might want to consult with your attorney before publicly suggesting that he is.

  3. Anonymous said on 26 May 2009 at 10:47 pm:
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    Gerhart should be fired simply for being incompetent.

    And the FBI was probably brought in because Ham Sandwich didn’t win the CA position and we’re still stuck with that dolt Ebert.

  4. Anonymous said on 29 May 2009 at 4:37 am:
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    None of you know what you are talking about.

  5. R4p3H4rd3rTh4nU said on 2 Jun 2009 at 8:21 pm:
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    Greg, As a victim in more ways than you or any other county resident of PWC I am surprised you think you can blow this out of proportion from the minimal information that has been released to the public to this point.

    As an employee of the company that was in cohorts with Gupta and his goons, I lost my job and have been unemployed for over a month. You (if you are a Co resident even) lost approximately $10 ($4,000,000 / 400,000 residents) of your taxes YOU paid over the last 5 years. I lost MY ENTIRE SALARY FOR AN ENTIRE MONTH.

    I along with other coworkers in this company and other peer workers within the county had no idea any of this was going on between PWC OIT and the contracted company. I believe Gehart and other county reps that have stated publicly that there wasn’t any more involvement outside the folks that have already been indicted. Gupta was a shizer and a con and people within OIT could tell he was a bad seed.

  6. OVerblown said on 2 Jun 2009 at 9:03 pm:
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    Agreed on people talking without knowing whats going on. Gehart Empire Building? Geez louise! If someone wanted to build and empire they would NOT start in PWC….I mean, this County is not the creme de la creme by ANY standard! Greg L., you are becoming laughable with your outrageous accusations…Oliver Stone is calling…

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