After subpoenaing more than 13,000 checks from the agency’s bank, auditors said they gave up counting after the first 1,549 checks they reviewed turned up $5.8 million in what they said was fraudulent spending over a six-year period when Island Child billed the state and the city more than $27 million.The particular local yeshiva involved is Bnos Bais Yaakov in Far Rockaway:
Yet Island Child, in Far Rockaway, Queens, paid nearly $2 million to Bnos Bais Yaakov, a nearby school for Orthodox Jewish girls, of which the auditors said Rabbi Samuel Hiler, the assistant executive director of Island Child, is both dean and an owner. Another $877,000 went to various Jewish summer camps, two of them tied to Mr. Hiler, and more than $330,000 in nonpayroll checks went to Mr. Hiler himself, the auditors said.I make no claims as to the culpability of Island Child Development Center, Bnos Bais Yaakov, or Rabbi Samuel Hiler. They are all innocent unless proven guilty and perhaps they deserve the benefit of the doubt.
| Bnos Bais Yaakov of Far Rockaway, |
image via Google Maps
When I read this story I was reminded of the time my parents were searching for a High School to send my younger sister to. Of the schools close to home the options were few, TAG, Bnos Bais Yaakov, and one other which was in the basement of the local Young Israel. My mother rejected the YI school since she had gone to Bais Yaacov of Pelham Parkway which was also in a basement and she didn't want that dark and dusty experiences for my sister. When they met with reps from Bnos Bais Yaakov they were told that no girl would be accepted to the school if there is a television at home.
It wasn't a question of American Idol versus a better education for my sister. It was my parents weltanschauung versus that of the Charedi guys who ran the school. The cloistered, closeted, cave dwelling life of the TV-less just wasn't what my parents wanted for their family.
The fellow referenced in the story above may be guilty of massive fraud, but we can be certain that he doesn't have a television at home. Let's make sure he gets an aliya this shabbos.
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