Until recently Mr. and Mrs. Eddie Holbrook held two of the ten top paying jobs at CCC. Mr. Holbrook was knocking down $125,000 plus benefits as Senior Director of Development and Governmental Relations. I have yet to determine just what Mr. Holbrook did to earn anything at CCC. Mrs. Holbrook knocked down around $80,000 plus benefits as the Director of the LeGrand Center, which never operated in the black. And, under loser Jason Falls, never will.
Now, around a month after losing his re-election bid for Commissioner, Eddie Holbrook has allegedly resigned from CCC effective the end of December 2018. I suspect he won’t be missed. I don’t say that to be mean, just to tell it as it is. It is about time Cleveland County got used to calling something exactly what it is and quit beating around the bush-hoping the scandals will just go away. It took a near record voter turnout on November 6, 2018 to rid Cleveland County of Commissioner Eddie Holbrook. And four of the five Commissioners in office today have exactly the same voting record as Eddie Holbrook. More cleaning house coming in 2020???
There is more to this story.
At Holbrook’s last Commissioner’s meeting in office, December 3, 2018, Holbrook was conspicuously absent. Not a word was spoken about Eddie Holbrook after 12 years in office. Not a peep. That was strange.
At that very same meeting I was awarded 806 pages of Public Records documents that I had requested over the years that Commissioner Holbrook had refused to provide, in violation of State Law. I quickly determined that, although many of my document requests were shortchanged, there were many other documents that provided what I considered damning information about how Cleveland County was run under Chairman Eddie Holbrook. In my judgement, if there were truly justice in Cleveland County. former Commissioner Eddie Holbrook and most of the other commissioners would be serving time in prison this very Christmas.
In particular, those documents provided to me, plus other documents and information I have received from other sources showed over $4 million in county tax dollars that been poured into Holbrook’s pet project-the ALWS- without approvals made in public hearings. This includes records indicating a $1 million county check that was allegedly made out to Eddie Holbrook personally and allegedly deposited in Holbrook’s personal accounts. I have requested a copy of that $1,000,000 check from the present county commissioners numerous times and my request has not been provided or the request even acknowledged. From whispered reports around town I am hearing that that $1,000,000 cancelled check may be in the hands of top law enforcement investigators and maybe the IRS too. Call your commissioners and ask that this check be acknowledged and a copy provided. Maybe you will have better luck than I have had.
Excessive county funding for the Earl Scruggs Center (DCC), the Cleveland County Fair, The YMCA also soaked up $millions of Tax dollars that appear to be lacking proper approvals, made in public meetings as required by law. I would call that embezzlement and others were involved. Maybe that is why there is this deafening silence down at the county offices about Eddie Holbrook.
Probably the biggest ticket item of all the suspicious county spending is the over $6 million budgeted this year for another of Eddie Holbrook’s pet projects. A “black hole” where tax money disappears without a trace-the Economic Development Partnership. Another area where everybody that is supposed to be involved refuses to provide pertinent information about who they are and exactly what they do. Not even an organization chart has been provided. Much less a strategic plan for workforce development-which is a deep and dark secret. For unsavory reason I can only suppose. (Like whose hands are in the cookie jar?)
So, one has to wonder what comes next for the ALWS, Economic Development, The LeGrand Center, the Shooting Range (now that cats are not shot there anymore), The Earl Scruggs Center and other entities that have never operated without county funding. Recently, The Fair included.
Folks, the cover is blown at the County Offices and Eddie Holbrook is gone. We will keep a close watch on the remaining Commissioners and hopefully prevent them from putting their hands in the cookie jar too.
It is a new day for Cleveland County!!!