Mayor: Theft of public money is "disheartening"

The investigation continues into the alleged theft of hundreds of thousands of dollars from the city's finance department, according to Mayor Mark Lauretti.

“We have a dollar amount but we think it could change,” Lauretti said Monday. “It’s hundreds of thousands of dollars.”

Assistant Finance Director Sharon Scanlon resigned last week in connection with the investigation, the city said last Friday.

Lauretti said the theft goes back as far as 2009. He didn’t want to say who had brought the impropriety to light.

“I don’t want to get into that right now because it will be part of the investigation,” the mayor said. “It’s really a combination of a few people.”

In a prepared statement last Friday, Lauretti said that Finance Director Louis Marusic was not involved in the investigation but had been placed on administrative leave.

“There is more than one part to this,” he said. “It will be out there very shortly.”

Outside personnel have been put in place to provide oversight in the Finance Department, the mayor said.

Lauretti said the city pursuing various avenues to obtain full restitution of money allegedly stolen.

“At the end of the day we will come out OK,” he said.

The mayor called the alleged theft “disheartening.”

“It’s very disappointing for a lot of us,” he said. “You put yourself in a position to trust someone, and you do that with a lot of employees.”