YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Former Mahoning County Deputy Auditor Carol McFall spoke Friday at a news conference about recent turmoil in the county auditor’s office, saying she simply followed orders and was fired for it.
The controversy stems from raises or bonuses former auditor Michael Sciortino granted to 18 employees just days before his suspension.
Current Mahoning County Auditor Ralph Meacham said he fired McFall for taking information out of county documents, then giving them out in response to a public records request about those raises and bonuses.
McFall said Friday that it is county procedure to only give out the exact data requested, which is why she provided a hand-written response to the records request.
“We have always had to redact information from public information requests. It has always been in our policies. We provide the information that is requested and nothing more,” McFall said.
But Meacham said that is not policy.
“As far as I know, that is not policy. It is not my policy. If that is policy, it is just another remnant to a damaged administration. And we are not going to change official documents,” Meacham said.
McFall also said Friday that she processed the paperwork for union raises, salary adjustments and other increases as soon as she got it.
She said she knew the timing would be suspicious, but was only following orders.
“I immediately realized that the circumstances and timing were going to cause scrutiny to the office,” McFall said. “My immediate concern was the impact these decisions would have on the office after Mr. Meacham’s term began.”
McFall said the raises were discussed publicly and with commissioners before Sciortino was removed from office.
“In my nine years of service with this county, I have worked tirelessly to effect improvement in the perception of county government and Mahoning County specifically,” McFall said.
Meacham also revealed on Friday that the state BCI criminal investigation is continuing in the auditor’s office. Agents seized McFall’s county computer.
He said he has no plans to reinstate the deputy auditor.