Rockford Aldermen Get First Look at Report on Stimulus Money Errors

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ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- The Rockford City Council met behind closed doors Monday night to discuss an initial report regarding how the city handled about $300,000 in federal stimulus money.

The city prepared report was supposed to be delivered two weeks ago and hasn't been made public yet. Rockford’s mayor acknowledged that mistakes were made and Monday’s closed door meeting was to discuss them. Anytime the city receives federal funding, the administration has to keep track of where it all goes. In this case, the mayor says there were errors in reporting where the city spent about $300,000. The city's Human Services Department was in charge of that money. Federal auditors want the money back and Mayor Morrissey says the city will return any money that it is required to.

“It is our responsibility to reimburse whatever we are obliged to reimburse,” says Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey. “We have a mandate to do more work, more monitoring at a time when we're actually getting less money, so our goal is to do the very best we can to be as efficient as we can and effective in our results."

The mayor wouldn't say tonight if any city staff members will lose their jobs in the wake of this error; however, he did say those answers will come out when the final report is published. That should happen in about a week.

Aldermen also gave final approval to Meijer to build a store at Rote and Perryville roads. The company has agreed to put up fences and other barriers to block light and noise from the surrounding neighborhoods. The store should open in 2015.