Monday, February 23, 2009

Ed Kindall should resign

Why has MNPS BOE member Ed Kindall's (District 7-Downtown-Glencliff) mess not gotten more notice? Channel 4's Dennis Ferrier reported on January 30, 2009 that Attorney Ed Kindall had to be sued by an estate he was handling. To start with Kindall's check written in August for $38,800 bounced! He failed to provide any accounting of where the estate's money went/is to Probate Judge Randy Kennedy despite being granted and extension and has promised to provide a full accounting and the funds by March 6. That means this family has been denied their inheritance for some 10 months. A man with 30 years of lawyering and 24 years on the school board who cannot monitor his own small office's handling of just under $60,000, by his statement, of his client's money is pretty much getting a free pass and is being allowed to oversee some $600 million in taxpayer dollars.

Why does Kindall get away with not providing an accounting to the Judge on January 30? Why does he get another 5 weeks? How is it his office needs an additional 5 weeks to provided a clear accounting of the funds? What other accounts are wrong? Where is the money during all this time? Ferrier says that the attorney for the estate thinks the widow and her three children are owed $121,500. Are criminal charges being considered? How much more of this might be coming now that the community has been given this heads up about Kindall's office practices?

This report from Dennis Ferrier does identify Kindall's attorney as George Thompson but it fails to point out Thompson is a former BOE member. Thompson decided not to run for reelection last August. He and Kindall have worked on the BOE and in the same building for quite some time.

The Tennessean has a few more details. Apparently, Papa Kindall is blaming his daughter Marjorie Tansil (a paralegal per this document). According to the Tennessean she's got other legal issues also.

Oddly, the MNPS BOE Code of Conduct fails to mention any sort of criminal behavior. As close as it comes is this paragraph [emphsis added]:

The Board commits itself and its members to ethical, businesslike and lawful conduct, including proper use of authority and appropriate decorum when acting as Board members.
Maybe this would fall under the conflict of interest clause since both the deceased and his widow formerly worked for MNPS. According to the BOE rules the most they could do is censure him.

Kendall obviously has some personal family and business issues that need his attention and the children of this district, the parents, the taxpayers do not have the time to wait in line during this vital transition time for Kindall to get his personal life in order. If Kindall cannot keep track of his own affairs and cannot fulfill his fiduciary responsibilities as a lawyer, how can we trust him to monitor a budget of $600 million?

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