Former prison food director's pension cut by comptroller's office; Was paid even though he skipped work on Fridays

2012-01-11T14:36:00Z 2012-01-11T14:47:59Z Former prison food director's pension cut by comptroller's office; Was paid even though he skipped work on FridaysBy The Citizen staff report Auburn Citizen
January 11, 2012 2:36 pm  • 

A Locke man who worked as a director at the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision is having his pension recalculated by the state Comptroller's office.

Howard Dean, 66, pleaded guilty to second-degree grand larceny in March 2011. Dean, who was the director of the food production center at Oneida Correctional Facility in Rome, admitted to submitting false time sheets, travel vouchers and asked for free food and donations from state vendors.

According to the comptroller's office, Dean's annual state retirement benefit has been cut by nearly $4,000 and the office is looking to recover $13,500 in pension payments made since he retired in 2008.

While as a director at the food production center, Dean was paid even though he skipped work on Fridays for 17 years. An investigation by the state Inspector General's office and comptroller's office also found that he submitted false travel vouchers and asked for free food and donations from state vendors, while steering $2.5 million in business to these vendors during his tenure. Dean defrauded the state of nearly $500,000, both offices said.

"This recalculation and the prosecution sends a key message to any abuser entrusted with public funds: we will find you, we will hold you accountable and we will make you pay," DiNapoli said in a statement. "My office will not tolerate abuses of the state pension system."

Dean is awaiting sentencing by Oneida County Judge Barry Donalty. His sentencing was scheduled for Tuesday, but the date was pushed back to May 10.

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(4) Comments

  1. ExAubrnian
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    ExAubrnian - January 12, 2012 8:47 am
    I agree a CO is a great job for those who have limited education & job skills.

    I just have a problem with taxpayer money being used for blatant overcompensation.

    If it were private sector,no one would mind. That is where these occupy nuts have it all wrong. They should be occupying the CSEA Headquarters. Private sector money is where the foodchain begins.
  2. tome8689
    Report Abuse
    tome8689 - January 11, 2012 5:27 pm
    ExAubrnian said: "what about all the state employees who pad overtime before retirment to increase benefits....I'd call that stealing also.Apparently Cuomo does too....alot is going to happen soon concerning pension reform"

    First of all you show how ignorant you are by this statement. Working overtime and having that computed as part of you final average salary is legal and also stipulated in New York State Retirment Law. I do agree as a taxpayer it should be changed but there is nothing against the law in what they are doing. More than likely even if Cuomo changes how the final salary average is computed it will not effect those currently enrolled in their retirement tier.

    It does sound from your post that you are a little envious of what these employees enjoy as a benefit. Up until recently the Correction Officer exam was offered every year. Maybe you should have taken it instead of skipping town and maybe you wouldn't be so bitter.
  3. Pat
    Report Abuse
    Pat - January 11, 2012 4:45 pm
    Why is this crook even gettig a pension? Why isn't he behind bars?
  4. ExAubrnian
    Report Abuse
    ExAubrnian - January 11, 2012 4:25 pm
    what about all the state employees who pad overtime before retirment to increase benefits....I'd call that stealing also.

    Apparently Cuomo does too....alot is going to happen soon concerning pension reform
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