Thompson Asks Attorney General Corbett to Investigate Criminal Elements in Former Turnpike Financial Manager’s Lawsuit

Feb 2, 2010

Washington, D.C.—Today U.S. Representative Glenn `GT’ Thompson, R-Howard, wrote to Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett  to ask him to investigate claims in Ralph M. Bailets’ suit against the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC), in which he alleges corruption and waste.

 Bailets was Assistant Secretary of Treasury and Manager of Financial Reporting and Systems at the Turnpike Commission from February 1998 to July 2008 when he was moved to another job. Then in November 2008 he was laid off by the PTC for what he claims was a wrongful termination for bringing potential fraud to the attention of his superiors.

“While this is an ongoing civil suit, there are criminal elements in the complaint that are very serious and need to be looked at further,” said Thompson.
 
Thompson wrote to Corbett:  “Prior to his dismissal for alleged budgetary reasons, the complaint reads that Bailets had previously discovered and reported a discounting scheme being engaged in by the largest commercial EZPass Customers.  Bailets claims organizations would act as suppliers of transponders to service smaller organizations not privy to the 20% volume discount on toll charges.”

The Bailets complaint states “that despite the loss of potentially millions of dollars in toll revenue (which could have relieved budgetary pressure), no action was taken to further investigate or correct this situation.”

Bailets also claims that billable hours were duplicated for a Turnpike contractor.  The contract involved more than $82 million, yet Bailets was told to “not make waves.”

Thompson’s letter concluded, “As the Commonwealth continues to face fiscal pressures, particularly when it comes to highway and infrastructure funding, the citizens of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and motorists using the Pennsylvania Turnpike deserve to know that their toll dollars are not being squandered on political patronage and personal gain.”

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