Friends of Glenbow schedule special meeting

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SCHOOL FUNDRAISING GROUP BEGINS INTERNAL AUDIT AFTER FRAUD ALLEGATIONS

Friends of Glenbow School Education Society (FOG) will be proceeding with an internal investigation after a former board member filed a complaint with the RCMP stating her signature was fraudulently used.

“The new executive has met and begun the audit and investigation process,” said Keith Chartier, FOG’s new chair. He added the organization is having some issues gathering information “that is simply beyond our control.”

A special meeting is set for March 22.

Last Wednesday afternoon, the RCMP confirmed they had closed the investigation, and that it would be up to FOG to look into the fraudulent signatures and cheques made out to the unnamed member.

“We are working diligently to continue with the process,” Chartier said.

Sandi Hennig said her signature was forged on three separate cheques for the amounts of $2,500, $1,750 and $700, respectively.

The cheques were dated for October, but Hennig only recently made the discovery when other members of the group questioned the reported amount of money raised during the committee’s fall card box fundraiser.

According to FOG’s bank statements between September 2017 and January 2018 $8,621.88 worth of cheques were written. Of that amount, $5,737.45 worth of cheques were claimed to be bear fraudulent signatures and $852.95 was claimed to have been used for unapproved expenditures.

There were two cheques made out to Rocky View Schools during that time, one for $4,000 on Oct. 31, 2018 and the other for $250 on Nov. 24, 2018.

Hennig filed a formal complaint to the Cochrane RCMP on Feb. 14.

The Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA) said due to confidentiality provisions of the Income Tax Act, the CRA could not comment on the specific case. However, in the event that an audit discovers the presence of potential tax evasion or the auditor suspects fraud, the file may be referred for potential criminal investigation.

“During the course of an investigation, the CRA may work closely with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, provincial and local police, and other law enforcement agencies on tax cases to maintain the integrity of the tax system,” said Karl Lavoie, CRA media relations.

Lavoie said it depends on the case whether information is shared with law enforcement and that the exchange of any taxpayer information with law enforcement occurs only in specific circumstances.

“If members of the public are concerned that a registered charity, or a member of a registered charity, is not complying with the provisions of the Act, they are encouraged to contact the CRA’s National Leads Centre,” Lavoie said.

“Additionally, if members of the public are concerned that an individual or organization is conducting fraudulent activities, they can contact the local authorities mandated to investigate such concerns. Members of the public can also contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.”

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Amy Tucker

Amy is a news reporter with the Cochrane Eagle covering everything from fire, crime and education to Morley events. Her previous career highlights include producing a mini documentary in India and coproducing a podcast spotlighting the tricky mixture of love and age. Amy has a degree in journalism and has tendencies to wander. When she's not writing the news, she spends her spare time swimming, dreaming about her next adventure and thinking about ways that she can make the planet a little greener.