Legislative leaders sign off on ethics reform with loopholes New questions about how Pat Pope awarded DeKalb school projects
MULTIPLE CHOICE: When did Pat Pope, a central figure in the criminal investigation of DeKalb County school construction contracts, divorce her first husband?
- 2006 (after marrying husband #2)
NOT-SO-HELPFUL HINT: At one time or another, she’s cited each of those years as the correct date.
DeKalb school officials want to pay Parsons Corp. and another firm $14.6 million to manage construction through 2012. The school board Monday may pony up the 2010 installment — $6.1 million. Parsons took control of the program in October when chief operating officer Pat Pope was reassigned as an investigation of construction contracts heated up. But the outsourcing would have cost the same regardless of Pope’s status, a school spokesman said today: “Their dollar figure would not have changed.”
DeKalb County schools’ multimillion-dollar damage suit over construction cost overruns may be undermined by a criminal probe of school contracts. Lawyers for a fired construction management firm, Heery/Mitchell, are scheduled to question the schools’ chief operating officer, Pat Pope, on Wednesday. Heery/Mitchell wants to hear what Pope knows about a criminal investigation of her handling of school construction contracts.
Patricia Pope, DeKalb County schools’ embattled chief operations officer, is officially out as the district’s construction manager, at least temporarily. Officials have insisted Pope is still the system’s COO even as a criminal investigation of school construction programs has ramped up. Pope may still be COO, but a new interim construction boss, Barbara Colman, is named in a proposal to be presented tonight to the DeKalb Board of Education.