Sunday, December 20, 2015

Embezzlement cases continue to plague California area

Barbara Jean Tabaldi is facing a tough holiday season. The 52-year-old former treasurer of the Kelly School Parent Teacher Organization is facing charges of embezzling $48,979 from the organization.
She was arrested Dec. 3 and released on $50,000 bail until her next court appearance on Dec. 28 in the Manteca Branch of San Joaquin Superior Court. Her charges are one in a string of embezzlement cases that have been brought throughout the county in the last year.
Tabaldi is accused of mismanaging the school’s PTO Club and Teachers PTO accounts from July 19, 2010, through July 1, 2014 and using a debit card for personal expenses such as a Disney Resort in October 2013.
Embezzlement continues to be a large problem in San Joaquin County. PTOs are an easy target due to the fact that they deal with large sums of money from fundraisers often held to help pay for school activities.
Defendants in PTO cases range from school district employees to parents and volunteers. Tabaldi was a mother and volunteer with the group.
There are things PTOs and similar organizations can due to minimize their risk. San Joaquin Deputy District Attorney Stephen Taylor suggests rotating treasurers at least every year, and have a finance committee monitor bank reconciliations, cancelled checks and bank and credit card statements in committee regularly. 
Lack of standard protocols by such organizations on the handling of money leads to continued problems with PTO embezzlements.
Taylor suggests school districts impose rules or standards on the PTOs operating in their schools so that as a minimum no one person has enduring sole control over the money and records.

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