What Milwaukee Public Schools REALLY Spends Per Child

Today the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported on an analysis of school spending. According to a report by the U.S. Census Bureau called Public Education Finances: 2010, Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) had 82,096 students in 2009-2010, revenue of $1.27 billion (p. 75), and expenditures of $1.26 billion (p. 77). It also reported “current spending” of $14, 019 per student in MPS.

Except there are a couple of problems with this $14,019 figure, mainly that it does not reflect all of MPS’s spending.

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The Mormon Madoff: How Shawn Merriman Scammed Millions

Jenna Martino, CNBC Associate Producer

Shawn Merriman was head of an investment firm and lay bishop in the Mormon church who persuaded friends, family, and church members to invest with him. It turned out to be a big scam, taking in more than $21 million. Among victims: his own mother.

What Merriman did is considered affinity fraud — where a perpetrator tries to swindle a specific group out of money. While Merriman was already a long-standing member of the Church of Latter-day Saints, other fraudsters have been known to specifically infiltrate a group with the sole mission of perpetrating a scam.

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What $18 Million Could Buy in Wisconsin

This week, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker made history be being the first governor  to win a recall election. The cost of the recall, including the primary and the general election, is estimated at $18 million. (And that’s not including the millions of dollars that were spent advertising and campaigning.)

The recall election never should have happened. The Wisconsin law allowing recall elections was created to allow voters to remove from office elected officials involved in misconduct. It wasn’t created to allow those who disagree with the governor’s budget to force a recall, although recalls for policy disagreements have become more common. (Sadly, the law on the books doesn’t explicitly say that recalls are to be used to remove politicians from office for misconduct. Hopefully that will be changed soon.)

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Paternity Fraud: Recourse for Swindled Fathers

Last week, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled that a mother can be sued for fraud by a man duped into thinking he was the father of her child. She can also be ordered to repay child support she received from the man. This is the first time a claim of paternity fraud is being recognized in Iowa.

Joseph Dier supported a child born to Cassandra Jo Peters for more than two years after she convinced him that he was the father of the girl. Dier sought full custody of the child in December of 2009, but in 2011 Peters came clean and said that he was not the father. Indeed, two paternity tests showed that he could not be the girl’s father.

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Consultants Training Institute Video: Emerging Leader Tracy Coenen

From the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts (NACVA) Consultants Training Institute (CTI), an interview with emerging leader Tracy Coenen. She talks with Brien Jones about how she developed her forensic accounting practice, how she markets Sequence Inc.’s services to attorneys, and what she likes to do when she is not working.

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