Hanks ... wallowing from one mess to another. Sounds like a certain type of animal. Can you guess which one.
The following was obtained by a reader via a public records request.
From: Betts, Christopher
Sent: Friday, July 10, 2009 12:11 PM
To: Kaitsa, George
Cc: Owen, William
Subject: BMV Lease
This email responds to the voicemail you left for me last evening (7-9-09). In your voicemail, you requested that I provide you with authority supporting the invalidity of the lease for the BMV space with Tuller Square Northpointe LLC. Specifically, you asked for authority supporting why the signature on the lease of Former County Auditor Todd Hanks was insufficient to create a valid lease.
As you are aware, a county and a county auditor are creatures of statute. In other words, they are both created by statute and, as a result, have only the authority specifically bestowed upon them by statute. Relative to the current circumstances, this means that the Ohio Revised Code would need to specifically grant authority to a county auditor to sign a lease for office space. I am unaware of any statute that provides such authority. Thus, the county auditor, on his or her own, lacks authority to enter a lease for office space.
The board of county commissioners, pursuant to RC 307.02, has the authority to acquire office space for county offices, including office space for the county auditor. This means that the board of county commissioners must approve any lease for office space. Given that only the board of commissioners, not the county auditor, has such authority and that the lease was not approved or signed by the commissioners, the lease is invalid.
Hopefully this information is helpful. Should you have any questions or need anything further, please feel free to contact me. Thanks.
Christopher D. Betts
Assistant Prosecuting Attorney
Delaware County Prosecuting Attorney's Office
140 North Sandusky Street, 3rd Floor
Delaware, Ohio 43015
Telephone: (740) 833-2690
Facsimile: (740) 833-2689