Pick up the pace of St. Clair County grant probe

April 2, 2014 

The U.S. Department of Labor supposedly wants to figure out whether discrimination and retaliation took place in the St. Clair County Intergovernmental Grants Department, but investigators sure are taking their sweet time in doing so.

It has been 10 months now since federal investigators interviewed grant department workers and obtained records from the county, even longer than that since the state concluded that the department discriminated against disabled residents, and retaliated against the workers who blew the whistle.

What's taking so long? It shouldn't be this difficult to reach a conclusion.

The investigation has dragged on so long now the situation in the Grants Department has gone from bad to worse. In March one of the workers involved in the investigation was fired and another suspended.

Maybe the county's actions were justified, but all the foot-dragging has allowed the workers to publicly claim that this is just more retaliation by the county.

It's time for the Labor Department to wrap up its investigation. The workers deserve answers, and so do the taxpayers paying the bills.

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