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12/1 Leone Letter COTH

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  • 12/1 Leone Letter COTH

    I was really irritated. Perhaps others were too. I can't believe the hubris. Any thoughts? Do we just wait for the USOC decision?

    I know some donors. Has anyone seen the a copy of the letter requesting permission to use endowment moneys to fund NGB litigation (can't believe this would be done orally), a list of the individuals to whom this letter was sent, and the replies of those who gave their permission? Does anyone know individuals or organizations who received such a request?
  • Original Poster

    #2
    I was really irritated. Perhaps others were too. I can't believe the hubris. Any thoughts? Do we just wait for the USOC decision?

    I know some donors. Has anyone seen the a copy of the letter requesting permission to use endowment moneys to fund NGB litigation (can't believe this would be done orally), a list of the individuals to whom this letter was sent, and the replies of those who gave their permission? Does anyone know individuals or organizations who received such a request?

    Comment


    • #3
      Not posted, yet! But, then again, neither is the Open letter to the USOC. Both letters are/were mentioned in the T of C, but neither were/are linked.

      Portia has donated to the Endowment fund, maybe she can comment on the statements by Leone (when she reads them...)

      By the way, my mother was a donor and certianly never got a letter asking her permission to use the funds at their discretion.
      co-author of 101 Jumping Exercises & The Rider's Fitness Program; Soon to come: Dead Ringer - a tale of equine mystery and intrique! Former Moderator!

      Comment


      • #4
        My 12/1 issue of COTH may be here by Wednesday ...
        and the letters online are 11/16 .. at least, I sure have not found a way to see the more/most recent ones ... (Please Melinda? can we see the letters?)
        Mal:This is the Captain. We have a little problem with our entry sequence, so we may experience some slight turbulence and then .... explode

        Comment


        • #5
          I haven't received my copy of that issue yet.

          When I wrote to the USET complaining about the use of the endowment funds, I received a call, followed by a letter, from the USET Director of Development, Gary Jaworski. He said that the USET was going to (a) take only those portions of the Endowment Fund with respect to which the USET had obtained the permission of the donors to use for other than the purposes for which the donations had been dedicated, and (b) obtain proper Board authorization for the use.

          I told him that if that was true, fine, but from all reports Dr. Leone had not stated those conditions, either in his open letter to the USET Trustees and members, or in his statements during the board meeting in which he announced that the USET had already spent a substantial portion of the endowment funds. Mr. Jaworski apologized that Dr. Leone had not been "clearer" and more precise in his statements, but assured me that the USET was going to follow the requirements of New Jersey law in the use of the restricted funds.

          I got the distinct impression that what they had done was to go directly to a few of the major donors and get their permission to use the amount of the endowment funds they had donated. Since a large portion of those funds, as with all USET donations, come from a very few people (dare I call them The Usual Suspects?), that probably wasn't too hard to do. However, if the USET drains the entire endowment fund, they will be in trouble since they do have to have the permission of each of the donors to use the funds that person donated for any purpose other than the restricted purpose.
          "I don't want to sound like a broken record here, but why is it that a woman will forgive homicidal behavior in a horse, yet be highly critical of a man for leaving the toilet seat up?" Dave Barry

          Comment


          • #6
            not dissimilar to previous statements by Dr. Leone. I was not impressed by the response or the tone. For example, he makes an issue of Mr. Standish's compensation being not all cash, but a combination of cash, vehicles and other percs... as though somehow that makes it less valuable.

            Uh, the point was that someone whose compensation (cash or not) exceeds $200,000 ought to be able to answer questions like who the major donors are, what sponsors are being pursued, what the current membership is etc.

            I was also amused to see that despite this sort of rather fine distinction, Dr. Leone again alleges that Alan Balch's litigation succeeded only on technical merits and really, the USET has done NOTHING wrong... Funny, I guess the judge just didn't see it that way.

            It goes on and on... ugh.

            **********
            To appreciate heaven well
            'Tis good for a man to have some fifteen minutes of hell.
            Will Carleton (1845-1912)
            **********
            We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
            -PaulaEdwina

            Comment


            • #7
              and Lucassb beat me to the exact reply I was composing ...
              Mal:This is the Captain. We have a little problem with our entry sequence, so we may experience some slight turbulence and then .... explode

              Comment


              • #8
                [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

                SoEasy, I should have put "favorable end to the NGB dispute" on my Christmas list.

                <sigh>

                **********
                To appreciate heaven well
                'Tis good for a man to have some fifteen minutes of hell.
                Will Carleton (1845-1912)
                **********
                We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
                -PaulaEdwina

                Comment


                • #9
                  My favorite part was the wording in item 1. (iii) 'expenses associated with NGB proceedings' but (iv)was 'expenses associated with Balch's lawsuit'

                  'If ignorance is bliss, why aren't more people happy?'
                  *****
                  You will not rise to the occasion, you will default to your level of training.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I have an offline question for you. If you would not mind, will you send me an email?
                    Thanks!

                    **********
                    To appreciate heaven well
                    'Tis good for a man to have some fifteen minutes of hell.
                    Will Carleton (1845-1912)
                    **********
                    We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
                    -PaulaEdwina

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      **bump**

                      **********
                      To appreciate heaven well
                      'Tis good for a man to have some fifteen minutes of hell.
                      Will Carleton (1845-1912)
                      **********
                      We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
                      -PaulaEdwina

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I have emailed to the Chron. and asked them to put the letters from 11/09 and 12/01 online - here's hoping
                        Nothing says "I love you" like a tractor. (Clydejumper)

                        The reports states, “Elizabeth reported that she accidently put down this pony, ........, at the show.”

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          I guess I hold non-profit organizations to a higher "moral standard" than the for-profit world. Leone spent the bulk of his letter talking finances and stated that the USET accounting practices receive a clean audit each year and that the forensic accountant found no instance of fraudulent accounting practices.

                          In today's Wall Street Journal, there is an article by Joe Berardino, one of the managing partners of a "Big 5" accounting firms in the US, Andersen, trying to explain how Enron corporation is now in bankrupcy. Andersen was Enron's auditing firm. Enron is a stock which last January was trading above $85/share and is now trading below $1. Thousands of people have lost their jobs. Retirees lost their pensions which was held in Enron stock. All this with the oversight of the Securities & Exchange Commistion reporting requirement, and the annual audits by a top accounting firm.

                          Mr. Berardino states, "Like the tax code, our accounting rules and literature have grown in volume and complexity....In the process, we have fostered a technical, legalistic mindset that is sometimes more concerned with with the form rather than the substance of what is reported."

                          He goes on to talk about "market integrity" and the need to consider the responsibilities and accountability of all.

                          Am I stretching things here, or is there something to be learned?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            what a perfect analogy rosinate!

                            iffy accounting

                            nondisclosure of loans

                            and many more parallels
                            Nothing says "I love you" like a tractor. (Clydejumper)

                            The reports states, “Elizabeth reported that she accidently put down this pony, ........, at the show.”

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I think the F word (FRAUD) is something the USET people deny entirely TOO much.

                              The forensic accountant testified up front, upon questioning by the USA Eq attourney, that he was NOT hired to FIND fraud. He was hired to investigate the finances - and specifically asked NOT to look for fraud. This point was made AT THE BEGINNING of his testimony to show that the USA Eq's intent was to figure out how solid (or not, as the case was) the USET finances are, etc.

                              So what is the FIRST question the USET LAWYER asks?? "Did you find fraud?" The accountant looks him straight in the eye and says, "I wasn't hired to look for fraud." So the USET att'y says, "Well, could you have FOUND fraud had you looked?" The Accountant TRIED not to answer that - and finally said, point blank. "yes."

                              But the USET were the ones who brought up the subject and pushed it? It was VERY strange to me.

                              By the way, ALL of the testimony is available and totally backs up the original letter.
                              co-author of 101 Jumping Exercises & The Rider's Fitness Program; Soon to come: Dead Ringer - a tale of equine mystery and intrique! Former Moderator!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I think the whole thing sucks. Yep, that just about sums it up for me!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Are the transcripts of the hearing online?
                                  Nothing says "I love you" like a tractor. (Clydejumper)

                                  The reports states, “Elizabeth reported that she accidently put down this pony, ........, at the show.”

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Weatherford, could you post where one might find these transcripts.

                                    I have looked for AHSA/USET court transcripts in the state of NJ website to no avail.

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      I can't help but be fascinated by the fall of Enron. I continue to bring up this comparison because all I see with the Alan Balch lawsuit(s) is an individual asking a corporation to behave in a professional, business-like manner. In the Enron case, there are Wall Street financial analysts out the ying-yang whose job it is to watch over corporations, and the SEC providing enforcement power. Other than Alan Balch, who's asking the "probing questions" in the horse world?

                                      In the 12/4/01 Wall Street Journal, the front page headline is, "Behind Enron's Fall, A Culture of Operating Outside Public's View."

                                      The article goes on to state how at a meeting with credit rating agency officials, Enron mentioned that shareholder's equity would be reduced by $1.2 billion. The analysts suggested that this was so significant that it should be reported to the SEC. Enron did not.

                                      The following is direct from the article:

                                      "It was vintage Enron: minimal disclosure of financial information that, in retrospect was central to understanding the complex company....But virtually unseen until the end was an Enron culture that contained the seeds of its collapse, a culture of highly questionable financial engineering, missated earnings and persistent efforts to keep inverstors in the dark."

                                      "Senior Enron executives flouted elementary conflict-of-interest standards. The company hired legions of lawyers and accountants to help it meet the letter of federal securities laws while trampling on the intent of those laws. It became adept at giving technically correct answers rather than simply honest ones."

                                      The WSJ gives the example: "One senior Wall Street official recalls asking Enron officials whether the company had retained bankruptcy counsel. He was told no. He later found out that while Enron hadn't formally retained such represnetation, it had met with bankruptcy lawyers. 'If you don't ask the absolute right question, you don't get the right answer'."

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        fyi - the COTH has now added several weeks of Letters to the Editor to the online version (thank you COTH) at http://www.chronofhorse.com/letters.html

                                        you can read our letter in the 11/09 section and the response from Leone in the 11/30 section
                                        Nothing says "I love you" like a tractor. (Clydejumper)

                                        The reports states, “Elizabeth reported that she accidently put down this pony, ........, at the show.”

                                        Comment

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