Investigation into Goliad timecard irregularities dropped
The investigation into Goliad County elected officials for timecard discrepancies has been closed, said County Judge David Bowman.
Jim Kreneck, Precinct 3 commissioner, was suspected of altering his employees' timecards to show they worked July 5, when they actually worked July 4.
Bowman said an unnamed investigative authority considered the timecard situation "inappropriate, but not illegal."
Bowman refused to name the agency or individual who investigated the matter, stating, "It won't accomplish anything. That is private information. The issue is over."
The Victoria Advocate filed an open records request for all reports on the investigation and any documents, emails or letters concerning irregularities in timecards. However, Bowman said the investigation was handled entirely verbally and he had no documents from the investigation to release.
Although Kreneck's crew did work the July 4 and not July 5, he still denies ever altering the timecards.
"I had done nothing wrong. If this kept going, push to shove, I was gong to get an attorney," Kreneck said.
Kreneck, who is in Tuesday's runoff election for the Republican Party nomination, said he is unsure of how this will affect the results. Early voting started Monday.
"It is entirely up to the people and how they feel," Kreneck said. "I have stated my innocence in altering them. I did not alter them and the rest is up to voters - if they believe me. I have a 12-year perfect record."
Ron Bailey, who is running against Kreneck in the election, filed the open-records request for Kreneck's timecards.
"If everybody is satisfied with that, then I am," Bailey said of the dropped investigation. "I didn't start an investigation; I was merely asking questions."
Ted Long, Precinct 4 commissioner, said the move was political. He said Bowman should release who performed the investigation and how they came to their decision.
"That information is pertinent to the public interest," Long said. "If he (Bowman) is not willing to tell us who was going to investigate and who the other elected officials are that he supposedly launched an investigation on, in my mind that proves that this was all political. There was nothing there.
Bowman said the investigation did not have a political purpose.
He said he never released the names of those under investigation and that Kreneck's name only came out because of the open records request filed by Bailey.
The Advocate talked to Bowman on Friday morning about the issue and he said he had turned the situation over to an agency for investigation. Bowman said on Tuesday, however, that matter was dropped sometime Friday afternoon.
Bailey also said he did not have an ulterior motive when he filed the open records request, but that monitoring elected officials should be routine.