The Monroe County Democratic Committee has recently announced Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo should be held accountable for illegally waiving fees for certain individuals while she held the position of Monroe County Clerk, beginning in 2008.
The U.S. Department of State determined Dinolfo’s administration had been in violation of federal law last week.
“In media interviews, Dinolfo claimed she needed clarification on waiving fees, that it was a common practice, and that four other states interpreted the law the way she did,” the MCDC said in a statement. “These claims are categorically false. The U.S. Department of State made it clear that they provide passport processing agencies with multiple documents that make it absolutely clear that collecting an execution fee is mandated by federal law.”
According to Democrats, Dinolfo is the only known county clerk to have waived fees for select individuals in recent history, and the county executive should publicly answer the following questions:
- What was the criteria used in determining who received the fee waivers?
- How, specifically, did this policy enhance customer service, especially in light of the fact that the individuals who have self-identified as waiver recipients claim they didn’t even know they received a fee waiver?
- Is County Executive Dinolfo suggesting former County Executive Maggie Brooks or Margaret DeFrancisco started this practice, and if so, when did it begin?
- And, County Executive Dinolfo said she would pay back a fee if she received a waiver. As she was County Clerk when the fee waivers were taking place, and claims that fees were waived in the name of customer service, how does she not know definitively whether or not she benefited from a waived fee?
County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo’s office has not yet responded to a request for comment regarding the statement.