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 November 7, 2003
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Exclusive Investigation
City Looking At What Happened To Money At City Owned Facility
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Eyewitness News has learned officials are trying to determine what happened to a large amount of money generated by the facility.
  We've learned the city has reason to believe tens of thousands of dollars collected at the rink between July, 2000, and the end of last year cannot be accounted for.
     It is likely and outside audit will be needed to determine how much money was never reported as income.
     The skating rink was a jewel in the crown of the renaissance city when the facility opened in 1999.
     But the facility never seemed to generate great amounts of money to the city, although the rink was popular.
    There were times when warm weather cut into the rink's use... but it remains a popular addition to the city.
    Now officials are concerned that more than warm whether was effecting the rink's profitability.
  Eyewitness News has learned that some times values at more than $5,000 were not put out to bid as required. That bank deposit books are not available..they're simply missing... and bank deposits were not made on a regular basis as they should have been
    In addition, officials want to know why former rink manager James Masone spent at least $7,200 dollars on lunches, dinners and on alcohol at the city's best restaurants.
    The management of the rink was recently taken over by the company that runs the Civic Center.
    Officials feel the facility is back on sound footing but they want to know what was going on while the facility was being run under the auspices of the city's parks department.
    Officials are looking into a wedding ceremony for an aide to former Mayor Vincent "buddy" Cianci that was held at the rink.
    They question whether the 1,500 dollars paid to the parks department by the aide was sufficient to cover costs.
   Officials are also questioning how and how much people working at the rink were paid.
   The bottom line here is there's a lot of money that no one seems to be able to account for.

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