Monday, January 30, 2012

For MJS, What's Old Is New Again

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has uncovered some "new" angle on the Walkergate story. There "breaking news" was that Tim Russell, who is facing embezzlement charges stemming from that investigation and seems to be mired in every aspect of the investigation so far, was fired for using a state credit card for personal use:

A former aide to Gov. Scott Walker accused of stealing from a fund for veterans was earlier fired from a state job for the misuse of public money, new records show.
Tim Russell, a former deputy chief of staff to Walker while he served as Milwaukee County executive, was fired from a job in 1993 for "gross misconduct," his personnel records show. This latest news follows charges filed in recent weeks alleging Russell stole money in 2010 from a fund meant for veterans.

Russell was fired from the earlier job at the quasi-public Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority after it was discovered in the spring of 1993 that he had improperly billed $1,123 in hotel stays to the agency. The details are in Russell's personnel file, which was released to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel through an open records request.

"We have considered carefully the disciplinary options available and have come to the conclusion that we have no other alternative than to terminate your employment, effective immediately," Russell's May 1993 termination letter reads.
Of course, those familiar with my work are probably wondering to themselves, "Yeah, so? What else is old?"

You see, we already heard this story in October 2010 when Milwaukee County Supervisor John Weishan brought it up, just months after it was learned that Russell had his office raided and his computers confiscated in the Walkergate investigation:
Milwaukee County Supervisor John F. Weishan, Jr., is calling on County Executive Scott Walker to disclose the full work history of the Housing Division administrator, Mr. Timothy Russell. It has been brought to Supervisor Weishan’s attention that Mr. Russell was terminated from a previous position at the Wisconsin Housing & Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) for illegal use of a department credit card for his personal use.

“After reviewing the past resumes of Mr. Russell, submitted to the County Board when he was considered for the position of Economic Development Director, I could not find any mention of this infraction,” Supervisor Weishan said. “It’s time for the County Executive and Mr. Russell to come clean about the Housing Division administrator’s work history.”
I brought this up again at the beginning of the month, after Russell was arrested in a tangential investigation:
One, this is not the first time it's been alleged that Russell has stolen. In October 2010, Milwaukee County Supervisor John Weishan brought up the fact that Russell had been terminated from a position with WHEDA when he used a state-owned credit card for personal use.
Ah, well, this isn't the first time I've scooped the paper and it won't be the last. Tis the life of a blogger, I guess.


  1. Thanks. "It ain't bragging if it's true."

  2. But newspapers claim that all the internet does is steal the content from the newspapers. That's what they keep saying. So it must be true.

  3. Do you think he signed the guest book at check-in? Was Russell billed at double occupancy rates?

  4. Tyler, yes, I hear that he might have had a special guest.