otsOntario’s tire recycling agency has been the target of two alleged thefts by top executives, bringing the total money in consumer “eco fees” placed at risk to more than half a million dollars. One of the thefts, allegedly by a former director of audit at the Ontario Tire Stewardship, was improperly kept secret from other accountants on the board and the stewardship’s audit committee, according to a stiffly worded letter from the publicly created agency that oversees tire recycling. The money at issue comes from Ontario consumers who pay $70 million in tire-recycling eco fees a year. ontario article “In our view this is highly unacceptable and inappropriate,” states the letter sent to the stewardship by Robert Gordon, chairman of Ontario’s recycling oversight authority, Waste Diversion Ontario. This year, other problems were exposed at the stewardship, including allegations of improper spending on dinners, alcohol and trips, and an allegation that a former chief financial officer stole $346,565 in 2012. The second theft has most probably occurred in the same time frame. The stewardship has had no idea the money was gone. It has been discovered a few months ago, when a lawyer for the stewardship’s former director of audit has called with an offer: They’d get the money back if the name of the former employee, an accountant, was kept confidential, according to a source close to the stewardship. The lack of control over money at the publicly created agency has been exposed in both cases. In a lawsuit filed on Feb. 9 against the former CFO, the stewardship has claimed the CFO has told a tire company to send a hefty payment to a bank account called Ontario Tire Account. In the second, the former director of audit is alleged to have diverted a $200,149 HST rebate cheque to a private account. The Star have obtained a copy of Gordon’s May 19 letter, sent to tire stewardship chair Glenn Maidment. A copy went to the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, which oversees recycling programs. In the letter, Gordon has told Maidment, “We are concerned that information is being withheld” from three other stewardship chartered accountants “ostensibly to avoid triggering a duty to report the alleged misconduct.” The former director of audit is an accountant. Under Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario rules, members are required to report misconduct involving a fellow accountant. There are a range of potential sanctions, from fines to loss of license. Article source: TheStar