As the house of cards continues to fall around Mary Easley and the former Governor, some of our questions as taxpayers may finally be answered, if you are willing to sort through hundreds of pages of emails (some are pretty  funny), meeting minutes (some redacted) and Mary Easley’s job creation/pay talking point recommendations. NC  State has made available, the documents they provided to the U.S.  Attorney’s Office regarding the hiring and subsequent firing of Mary Easley. NCSU filed the documents with the U.S. Attorney’s Office as part of their initial response to federal subpoenas for documents relating to the hiring of Mary Easley which as you may already know stem from the ongoing federal investigation into former Gov. Mike Easley.

On NCSU’s website they describe the documents as:

This set of documents were produced to the United States Attorney’s Office on June 8, 2009 and include documents from the Chancellor’s Office and the Provost’s Office; documents produced by McQueen Campbell, the former chair of the NC State Board of Trustees; and documents from various other offices within NC State.  This set includes personnel documents related to Mary Easley, including a copy of her contract with NC State; documents concerning Mary Easley’s salary and hiring; and emails between and among top university and University of North Carolina officials.

As I reviewed the documents it became painfully apparent that EVERYONE involved in the creation of Easley’s fabricated postion from Erskine Bowles to the Board of Trustees was on-board and supportive of her grotesque salary increase until the federal subpoenas began to role in. Funny how a few subpoenas can change the way people think. After that they all threw Easley’s under the proverbial bus where she now has plenty of company but the way this has worked out so far for taxpayers, the bus will probably be chauffeured serving caviar.

But we should give credit where credit is due, there are some good guys in this debacle. Kudos to the News and Observer regarding their dogmatic,”aggressive” reporting on this collaborative corruption, as well as uncovering previous financial issues that illustrates a disregard for taxpayers by the former Easley administration. Clearly the N&O’s  investigative reporting made a difference in this matter and I hope a few sleepless nights for the participates at NCSU. Consider this email to James Oblinger from Clifton Metcalf. (page 199 of Collection One)

Just a short note to say BRAVO for your patience, restraint, and over all handling of the N&O’s aggressive treatment of the Mary Easley and Provost stories. I know nothing beyond what I have read about either situation, but I know and respect you, and I admire how you have responded in a decidedly trying situation.Your letter to the editor displayed on the N&O website today, by the way, was marvelously worded and transparent. This may not end the story, but keep smiling and maintain your cool. You have done and are doing a great work at NC State, and many of us who observe those things appreciate you for it.

I find it amusing that grown men are giving each other high fives over their perceived superior handling of the media with respect to an issue affecting taxpayers and gov’t waste. Their hubris will no doubt be under consideration in the coming days and weeks and I believe we should rethink who we have as role models in the university system. When our administrators talk about hundreds of thousands of dollars like it is chump change it is time for a reality check not a paycheck.