Carmel Official Uses Tax Dollars For Personal Wardrobe
Douglas Haney Bought Himself Leather Jacket, Shirts
8:23 AM, Sep 28, 2011
Controversy is building in the city of Carmel over a purchase made by City Attorney Douglas Haney.Records obtained by 6News' Joanna Massee show Haney used public funds to buy a leather jacket and shirts totaling $446.75.Carmel City Council President Eric Seidensticker said he wants to prevent surplus departmental tax dollars from being spent on items like clothing and furniture.Seidensticker said he decided to sponsor an ordinance to stop similar purchases after learning about Haney's spending spree."For (Haney) to go out and buy several shirts and a leather jacket, that has the city seal embroidered on it, I thought it was a little over the top," Seidensticker said.Seidensticker's proposal would prevent unused funds from one year's budget from being spent on clothing, office supplies, furniture or any other item for which a department line item would ordinarily be used."In terms of sending a signal to surrounding communities, I don't think any taxpayer would like to know that somebody's wardrobe is being funded by taxpayer dollars," Seidensticker said.An employee at Embroidery Plus, the store which filled Haney's order, said other municipalities have ordered leather jackets for retired firefighters. The employee chose to remain anonymous.In his defense, Haney said that the purchases were part of his income and that he paid taxes on them, but declined to discuss the controversy in depth.Seidensticker's proposal will be considered by council at the regular meeting on Oct. 3."Now we have to close another loophole, and undoubtedly they'll be more loopholes in other ordinances," Seidensticker said.