Wednesday, May 12, 2010
State Treasurer Rob McCord says the Gaming Control Board is barring him from public and private meetings – and he’s filing a lawsuit in Commonwealth Court in order to gain access to the sessions. As Treasurer, McCord is an “ex officio” member of the board without voting privileges. McCord says Gaming Control Board staffers are keeping meetings secret, and have rejected his attempts to play a more active role in their deliberations. “I think the board is trying to keep a closed culture. I think the culture of the board is flawed. I think the idea that the board thinks it’s up to them to give permission is a dangerous one. Really dangerous. It’s an illegal one’” says McCord. He says his presence is needed in the meetings to bring more oversight, “There’s a huge amount of money here. Billions of dollars. I think there’s plenty of reason to be skeptical about the process. Plenty of reason to be skeptical about why things took so long. Plenty of reasons to ask questions about whether or not insiders with steep connections were given special permission in ways that cost taxpayers money.” In a statement, Board spokesman Doug Harbach says he is “mystified” by McCord’s lawsuit. Harbach says McCord can attend sessions if he signs a non-disclosure form. Governor Ed Rendell agrees with the Board position.