Laid off JCETP employee sends letter to U.S. Attorney, AG asking for Thomas investigation

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A now former employee with the Jersey City Employment and Training Program is calling on the U.S. Attorney and New Jersey Attorney General to investigate financial decisions made by Acting Executive Director Sudhan Thomas.

Nuria Sierra photo via LinkedIn.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“Mr. Thomas, since his appointment as Executive Director, has continuously misappropriated funding and has jeopardized the financial integrity of this organization,” Nuria Sierra, a former JCETP accounts and payable clerk, wrote in a July 11th letter to U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito and NJ Attorney General Gurbir Grewal.

She continues that she was placed on administrative leave on July 5th due to her “objections to his financial mismanagement and my reporting relationships with the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development.”

Sierra’s remarks comes with a sense of irony, since former Gov. Jim McGreevey was terminated by a board vote after allegations arose of financial improprieties being committed under his leadership, a claim that he has adamantly denied.

An email to JCETP board members Stacey Flanagan and Jake Hudnut on July 5th indicates that “this man will ruin the program,” expressing concerns about employees not receiving health benefits.

She also provides copies of three JCETP checks, totally $16,500, made out to cash and signed off by Thomas: one on April 18th and two on May 4th.

The check signed on April 18th for $7,500 is made out for an “outpatient capital purchase outline.” The other two checks are made out for $4,500 each and the reasons for the expenses are illegible.

A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office confirmed that they had received a copy of Sierra’s letter, while a spokesman for the NJ Attorney General’s Office said the letter “will be forwarded to appropriate department staff for review, as is done with all correspondence.”

Thomas, who has applied for the full-time director position, is currently embroiled in a blood feud with McGreevey.

Also the president of the Jersey City Board of Education, Thomas recently alleged that a forensic audit proves that McGreevey misappropriated JCETP funding during his tenure.

McGreevey has written of the audit as a political hit job since the firm was selected by “handpicked surrogates” of Mayor Steven Fulop, who appoints JCETP board members and was the first person to publicly accuse McGreevey of malfeasance.

JCETP is currently down to the bare minimum number of five board members after four members, including Thomas himself, stepped down in the past few weeks.

Thomas did not immediately return an inquiry seeking comment on Friday morning.