Spouse of Cuyahoga County administrator cited in subpoena works for contractor also named in subpoena

February 21, 2018 GMT

Spouse of Cuyahoga County administrator cited in subpoena works for contractor also named in subpoena

CLEVELAND, Ohio - A Cuyahoga County administrator who is responsible for information technology contracts and who is named in a recent grand jury subpoena is married to the manager of government contracts for a Westlake software company also named in the subpoena.

One of two subpoenas served on the county by corruption investigators seeks communications between Emily McNeeley and Hyland Software. McNeeley has been general counsel and director of special initiatives for information technology for the county since June of 2016, according to her LinkedIn profile.

Her spouse, Lisa McNeeley, is manager of proposal services and government contracts for Hyland, according to her LinkeIn page. She has held that position since Jan. 18. Previously, she worked at Hyland as public procurement administrator and then as “Team Lead” for government contracts.

Contacted by cleveland.com about the relationship, county spokeswoman Mary Louise Madigan said county officials knew the women were married prior to the corruption investigation.

She also provided documents showing that Emily McNeeley had contacted the county’s inspector general twice in 2016, when McNeeley was still an assistant law director assigned to contracting and procurement. In both instances, McNeeley asked if her involvement with Hyland contracts represented a conflict of interest.

In response to the first request, made on March 16, 2016, Inspector General Mark Griffin stated that there was not a conflict as long as the county “does not contract directly with Hyland Software,” or that McNeeley’s wife does not work on city or county procurement contracts at Hyland. The memo states that she does not.

Emily McNeeley sought a second opinion on May 17, 2016, because the county’s Information Technology Department began receiving direct support form Hyland and her boss, Scot Rourke, was “considering expanding the County’s business relationship with Hyland,” according to Griffin’s response to McNeeley.

As a result, Griffin determined, McNeeley did have a conflict, but that it would not prevent her from working on projects after contracts were awarded.

Asked if McNeeley complied with the inspector general’s second opinion, Madigan said she didn’t have the answer.

A message left Tuesday for Lisa McNeeley at Hyland Software was not returned. A message left with the company’s spokesperson on Tuesday also was not returned.

The subpoena related to Emily McNeeley asks for a variety of documents dating to Jan. 1, 2016, including any emails or letters that she or Rourke, the county’s chief transformation officer and information officer, may have exchanged with Hyland.

The Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office also asked in the subpoena for “any and all paper or electronic records of access by Scot Rourke and Emily McNeeley to documents related to any contract between Cuyahoga County and the following entities: OneCommunity , OneCleveland, Everstream, DigitalC and Hyland.Software, including, but not limited to Server Access Logs.”

Hyland has provided services to Cuyahoga County for more than a decade. A contract with Hyland was approved by the County Council as recently as November of last year. It was to provide software upgrades to the Office of Child Support Services through the end of 2018 and was not to exceed $660,245.

The contract is for improvements to a case-management system to allow for more efficient and effective collection of child-support payments, according to testimony at a meeting last November before the County Council’s Health, Human Services and Aging Committee.

A previous contract for Hyland Software services was approved in December of 2016 for no more than $371,570. It was to provide “OnBase maintenance and professional services on system upgrade and process improvement projects for the period 1/1/17 – 4/30/18,” according to information on the county’s website.

A second subpoena served on the county sought travel records and other work-related information on Sharon Sobol Jordon, who recently announced she was leaving County Executive Armond Budish’s chief of staff to become chief executive officer of the Unifiy Project, a nonprofit that plans to use data-crunching and artificial intelligence to fight poverty and other social ills.