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Long Grove, Iowa and Park View overpay city employees more than $500,000

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LONG GROVE, Iowa-- "Jeeze Louise, that's a lot of money," says Long Grove resident Bobbie Behrens.

Some people in Long Grove, Iowa feel cheated.

"We were a little upset," says Janie Rasmussen.

The frustration comes from the $427,000 paid out to Joel McCubbin, Long Grove's Public Works Director of 30 years. He was also head of Park View's water and sewage, two full times jobs he held at the same time.

The State of Iowa's Auditor's Office released an 87-page document at shows over the past 8 years, $577,108 were improperly and unsupportedly distributed to city employees. $427,000 of that was paid to McCubbin.

The audit found more than $54,000 of that was from fake reimbursement slips, sometimes duplicates submitted to both communities.

And an additional $11,600 was from forged time cards in Long Grove. The report shows 219 times, McCubbin was at local casinos when he said he was at work.

And the rest of the pot came from Long Grove and Park View leaders paying him for work he never did.

"A lot of people are just sad this is happening here," says Long Grove City Clerk Rosina Botticker.

The suspicion was reported back in May 2017.

Park View put McCubbin on unpaid administrative leave, but Long Grove kept paying him despite legal advice to fire him.

City leaders stand by their decision.

"It was important to the council and the mayor at that time, they provided Joel with the benefit of the doubt until they had the documentation necessary to make a decision otherwise," says Botticker.

That decision cost taxpayers $101,000.

"How could you have the allegations you have and still be on paid administrative leave for a year afterwards? We didn't understand that part," says Long Grove resident Alicia Gay.

Not only did McCubbin receive improper payments from Long Grove, a lot of that money came from Park View just down the road.

The state concluded there was no way he could work two full-time jobs of that capacity.

"People were having a little trouble with him getting stuff done in town and getting building permits, stuff like that," says Behrens.

McCubbin was required to work 40 hours per week in Long Grove. But in Park View, there was no contract. He told the state he could "work for an hour or 1,000 hours as long as everything operated smoothly."

The state disagreed and said he was overpaid $209,000 for hours he didn't work, putting much of the blame on poor oversight of taxpayer dollars.

"I'd let the citizens know we're working on our policies diligently," says Botticker.

Right now, there are no legal charges against Joel McCubbin. He no longer works for either Long Grove or Park View.

The audit shows the other $140,000 came from Long Grove leaders overpaying other employees for unnecessary sick leave and benefit costs.

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