Earthquake in the Municipality, hidden holes and inflated income: “This is how the budgets were fake”

Making ends meet – every family knows trivially – is a complex operation, especially in times of lean cows. But with numbers there is no escape, they are merciless. Instead, as emerges from the investigation that triggered an earthquake in the Municipality, in the blianci of the administration, since 2016, the figures would have become really dancers and – almost magically – to smooth out the losses, it would have been sufficient to foresee greater future income ( without real holds and supporting data) in various sectors, from fines to the tax on waste to building costs. However, the reverse trick would also have been used, that is, underestimating costs that are actually much more substantial, especially in relation to contracts with investee companies, starting with Amat and Rap. The result, according to the Prosecutor’s Office which has just closed the investigation for Mayor Leoluca Orlando and 23 other people , would have been to hide holes – if not chasms – in the accounts that, with the passage of time , would have become bigger and bigger and without interventions to avoid the collapse being carried out in time: today, in fact, the Municipality is in a state of predissesto.

The mayor Orlando: “I do not resign” | Video The investigation started by the Court of Auditors The investigation of the economic-financial police unit of the financial police, led by Gianluca Angelini, coordinated by the deputy prosecutor Sergio Demontis and by the deputies Andrea Fusco and Giulia Beux, actually started from the Court of Auditors: it was the Accounting Prosecutor who to receive first exposed on the financial documents of the Municipality, in fact, already around 2018. Proceedings which then, in order to identify any criminal profiles, were more recently transmitted to the ordinary Public Prosecutor. The ballerine figures Sifting through the charges, even those who do not have particular accounting skills and abilities, can notice some data that totally clash with mathematics: for example, in relation to the allowance for the occupation of buildings of the Municipality, from no data available for in 2015, at a figure ascertained in 2016 of one million 875,032 euros, the then area manager Sergio Pollicita would have made a forecast of receipts of 9 and a half million; in the same period, Daniela Rimedio , as manager of the Tari service, would have estimated a future collection linked to the recovery of the arrears of the tax of 10 million, against a figure ascertained in 2015 of just 2 million 478,285.72 million euros and 4 million 120,986.20 euros in 2016. The expected maximum collection of over 83 million for fines Also impressive are, for example, the numbers provided in 2018 by the former commander of the municipal police, Gabriele Marchese (who, after learning that he was being investigated, declared: “I’m fresh like a quarter of a chicken “): according to the prosecution, he allegedly attested to a false forecast linked to the receipts for fines of 83 million and 267,719.06 euros, compared to a figure ascertained in 2017 of just 12 million 916,754.50 euros and slightly higher in 2018, i.e. 13 million 28,597 euros. Figures that would not have gone unnoticed, so much so that – as stated in the notice of conclusion of the investigations – in the proposal to the Board of resolution approving the 2018 financial statements, signed by the councilor Antonino Gentile , would be Adjustments have been introduced to better balance the accounts. In particular, previous collections for fines of 28 million 88,865.12 euros would have been added. The ok to documents from all control bodies These are just a few examples contested by the Prosecutor’s Office: however, it is understood from the documents that, despite the various bodies and control mechanisms – starting with the board of auditors – these accounting documents would always have had the go-ahead and then induced the Council to approve them. The alleged tricks used in the financial statements, in cascade, would then have repercussions on the management report of several years and on the break-even certifications of the same financial statements. The alleged irregularities in the 2016 budget In the notice of conclusion of the investigations, in an analytical manner, the financial statements are taken into consideration. For that of 2016, in addition to the disputes listed above, in view of the approval of the budget, Sergio Pollicita , the manager of the management of sanctioning procedures under the command of the municipal police, Lucietta Accordino , with the former councilor for the budget, Luciano Abbanonato , would have foreseen an income of 85 million, compared to an ascertained figure of 65 million 236,501.80 euros in 2015 and 65 million rounds in 2016. Mario Li Castri , area manager for Infrastructures, and Paolo Porretto , as manager of the one-stop building, at item “building grants from urbanization works”, would have calculated revenues for 2016 of 11 million, when the data established for 2015 would have been just 5 million 255,744.88 euros and with a decrease in 2016 to 4 million 537,844.53 EUR. The manager of the building amnesty office, Carlo Giovanni Galvano would have expected income from building amnesties and ancillary charges for 6 and a half million, compared to 1 million 163,604.38 euros ascertained in 2015 and 4 million 537,844.53 euros. Leonardo Brucato , Head of the Budget and Tax Sector, Luigi Mortillaro , Head of the Budget Service, and Carmela Agnello , General Accountant , on 20 June 2016 they would have given a favorable opinion on the technical and accounting regularity to the proposed resolution of the Board for the approval of the financial statements for that year, signed by Subscriber , in which there would be – for prosecutors – other falsehoods: such as an adjustment on the forecast of building amnesty proceeds, which would have risen further to 13.5 million and, on the contrary, an underestimated cost of 805,542.80 euros for the environmental hygiene service entrusted to Rap ( the contract with the investee would have had a cost of 114 million 18,685 euros, but a lower cost of 113 million 213,142.20 euros would have been foreseen). The board of auditors, composed of Cosimo Aiello , Antonio Mineo and Salvatore Di Trapani , in the report dated 19 July 2016 they would then have given a favorable opinion on the 2016 budget, falsely certifying, says the Public Prosecutor, “the internal consistency, congruity and accounting reliability of the budget forecasts” and misleading the city council, which had then approved the document. The alleged irregularities in the 2017 budget With regard to the 2017 budget, Brucato would have provided for surcharges and interest relating to the old tax on waste (Tares) for 9 million 583,718.57 euros, against an established figure of just one million 236,815.21 euros in 2016 and 6 million 551,909.21 euros in 2017. It would have done the same with Tarsu, forecasting revenues of 4 million 387,636.80 euros, compared to one million 661,762.29 euros ascertained in 2016 and 2 € 326,593.29 million in 2017. The expense for Rap would have been underestimated once again, for a good 7 million 934,361.57 euros (the contractual cost would have been 118 million 557,973 thousand euros, but the forecast would have been 110 million 623,611.60 euros). Also in this case, then, the budget was approved by the Council with the ok of all the bodies responsible for control. The alleged irregularities in the 2018 budget In 2018, in addition to the boom in receipts expected by Marchese with fines, Pollicita and Paola Di Trapani , manager of the Housing policies sector, they would have calculated a recovery of the occupancy compensation of the Municipality’s buildings of 4 million, compared to just 499,972.36 euros ascertained in 2017 and 49,204.35 euros in 2018. Bohuslav Basile , as a general accountant, would then have given a favorable opinion on the technical and accounting regularity and the cost of the Rap would have been underestimated again, with a difference in this case of 13 million 630,141.49 euros (real cost of 111 million 103,922, 20 euros and forecast of 124 million 734,063.69 euros). The financial document had been approved by the Board, also passing the scrutiny of the auditors – Marcello Barbaro , Sebastiano Orlando , Marco Mazzurco – which would have certified that “the quantification … appears appropriate”. The 2015 management report As regards the management report of the Municipality of 2015, for the investigators, a deficit of 381 million 734,114.23 euros was falsely attested against an actual and higher one of 431 million 347,323.65 euros. Mortillaro , manager of the Budget service, Brucato and Agnello would have given a favorable opinion on the technical and accounting regularity on the proposal of the Executive for the approval of the ordinary re-assessment of the residues in 2015, proposed by the councilor Subscriber . Active residues already prescribed According to the Public Prosecutor’s Office, however, in the accounting documents, active residues were indicated in reality already pre-written and very dating back over time: for 2006, 6,599.05 euros, and for 2007, 260,423.86 euros, raising the total from 20 million. 801,419.48 euros to 21 million 68,442.39 euros. The auditors – Cosimo Aiello , Antonino Mineo and Salvatore Di Trapani – would then give their favorable opinion and the the deed was then approved on the proposal of the councilor for the budget and the mayor. “The structural deficit of the municipality has been hidden” Unrealistic numbers would also have been included in relation to the payment of enforcement actions, the restricted fund for the proceeds of violations of the highway code and the provision for litigation risks, reaching a total of 25 million 416,904.09 euros which, for prosecutors, would have actually had to be quantified at 51 million 573,020.70 euros and, therefore, calculated with an underestimate of 26 million 156,116.70 euros. Also in this case there would have been the favorable opinion of the various bodies in charge, including an amendment presented on 1 July 2016 by the municipal councilor Mimmo Russo, with which an annex to the report would have been replaced, inserting a certification of the deficit parameters for 2016. This, according to the investigators, would eventually lead to “concealing the fact that the Municipality was structurally deficient”. The 2016 management report In the 2016 management report, a deficit of 366 million 988,134.18 euros was falsely attested against an actual and greater one of 453 million 957,031.43 euros. Furthermore, the commander of the municipal police, Vincenzo Messina and the manager of the local police, Lucietta Accordino , in that period would have adopted two managerial decisions with which they would have ascertained other residual assets for reports and fines not collected from 2010 to 2015, for a total of 65 million 862,932.87 euros. There would also have been irregularities in relation to the debt / credit mismatch fund with investee companies for a good 14 million 240,050.31 euros “far below the real 29 million 802,342 euros”, say the investigators. 2017 management report In relation to the 2017 report, again Messina and Accordino , with a managerial determination, they would have estimated residual assets for minutes and fines not collected between 2010 and 2017 for 48 million 488,659.74 euros. The payables / receivables of the subsidiaries would have been calculated with a difference of 10 million 158,400 euros, eventually reaching a balance for 2017 between income and expenses of 122 million 354 thousand euros against a real balance of 52 million 669 thousand euros. In this case, the auditors’ okay had arrived, even though they would have expressed a “non-positive evaluation” on the same report. The 2018 management report Irregularities would also have occurred in 2018, when the commissioner Roberto D’Agostino , the mayor, Sebastiano Orlando , Marcello Barbaro ) and Marco Mazzurco falsely attested a deficit of 340 million 580,603.86 euros compared to a real deficit of 343 million 584,966.75 euros. The document had been approved and, consequently, a balance between revenues and expenses of 191 million 453,674.28 euros would have been reached instead of no more than 153 million 526,579.39 euros. The mayor’s directive of 18 June 2018 The Prosecutor also disputes the mayor’s directive of 18 June 2018: Leoluca Orlando allegedly exposed false data, reporting credits to be recognized / settled re of the Municipality towards the lower subsidiaries than the real ones. Specifically, reference would have been made to only 197,055 euros of the Municipality’s debt to Amat for 2016 against the company’s receivables without spending commitments, for public prosecutors, equal to 8 million 890,322 euros; only 7 million 636,413 euros of debt of the Municipality for 2016 against real debts of 19 million 097,143 euros towards Rap. The distorted balance sheet Finally, the balanced budget certifications would have been irregular: the mayor Orlando , with the accountant general Agnello and the auditors Aiello and Mineo would have indicated a final balance between revenues and expenses for 2016 of 55 million 860 thousand euros compared to a minus 35 million 213 thousand euros, “concealing the non-compliance with the balance of balance sheet on 30 March 2017 “, a balance for 2017 of 122 million 354 thousand euros compared to a real balance of 52 million 669 thousand euros, on 28 June 2018, a balance for 2018 of 191 million 453,674.28 euros instead of 153 million 526,579.39 euros in 2019.

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