Only minor errors in audit, golf-management firm says

August 29, 2008|By Chris Guy | Chris Guy,

The Virginia company that manages two Anne Arundel-owned golf courses said yesterday that an audit of employee payroll and immigration papers turned up only minor clerical deficiencies.

The company, Billy Casper Inc., had been ordered to review its files by Anne Arundel County Executive John R. Leopold. After reviewing the files of about 180 workers at the Eisenhower and Compass Pointe courses, a company official and Leopold said the firm had found nothing that would amount to a breach of its multi-year contract with the county.

"We feel completely exonerated," said Rich Katz, the company's senior vice president. "We dotting all the i's, crossing all the t's. We're happy with our firm's compliance with the county and immigration authorities. We were neither in default on our contract nor had any issue with the law."

County attorney Jonathan Hodgson refused to characterize the 18-year-old company's performance on the audit ordered by Leopold.

"There were some errors and deficiencies in completing forms," Hodgson said. "We were looking to see if they were in breach of their management contract."

Leopold, who has taken a hard stance on illegal immigration, wrote a July 25 letter to the company threatening to cut ties to Billy Casper Inc. if it did not turn over employment and other records.

In June, Leopold participated in a police raid at an Annapolis paint company that resulted in the arrests of 46 suspected illegal workers. The highly publicized actions come about one year after Leopold issued an executive order requiring businesses hired by the county to sign a contract swearing they do not hire illegal immigrants.

In an agreement announced yesterday, Casper will provide $1,000 to help provide seminars about immigration paperwork for local firms, Katz said.

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