Aren’t we all tired of orchestra related embezzling? There isn’t a year that goes by without a story going public about someone stealing from orchestras or orchestra musicians. Of course, embezzling is worse than what’s reported as most cases are “taken care of” behind closed doors so it’s difficult to accumulate any reliable statistics regarding how much abuse the business endures each year…
The latest incident comes from Buffalo, NY where the Buffalo Daily News reports that Mark R. Jones, former AFM Local 92 president and secretary-treasurer, pleaded guilty to embezzling $74,000 from 2002 through 2005 (that’s about $50/day).
That’s a pretty hefty sum considering that the 2003-2004 annual work dues paid by the Buffalo Philharmonic musicians into Local 92’s coffers only amounted to $67,366. Unfortunately, that figure is even more staggering when you consider that the $67,366 represents 66% of Local 92’s cumulative local annual work dues.
The subject of nonprofit crime is addressed in an Adaptistration article from 1/23/06 where one of the primary conclusions was a need for increased oversight measures. Sadly, that conclusion is just as valid now as it was at the beginning of the year.