Friday, November 21, 2008

Looting manager puts Kusko 300 in jeopardy: Sports |

Looting manager puts Kusko 300 in jeopardy: Sports
"Out an estimated $15,000 and shaken by a manager looting race coffers, the one-time richest, middle-distance sled dog race in the north is scrambling to prepare for the January start of the mushing season.

The Kuskokwim 300 Sled Dog Race from Bethel to Aniak and back is still scheduled for Jan. 16, but the purse won't be set until Dec. 15. It was $100,000 last year, mushing's third largest purse, behind only the three-times longer Iditarod and Yukon Quest International sled dog races.
But a lot has changed since the dog teams took their summer hiatus.
One-time Kusko race manager Staci J. Gillilan was arrested in May on charges that she had been embezzling race funds for almost a year. By then, she'd already been fired after the race's board of directors found out the Kusko had failed to pay the city of Bethel upwards of $20,000 in gaming taxes.
The Kusko raises a big chunk of its budget with the sale of pull tabs. Both the city and the state levy taxes on those games. The race was left liable for taxes Gillilan was supposed to pay but didn't.
Myron Angstman, the Kusko race chairman, said Gillilan is prepared to plead guilty to taking money from the race, and the race is hoping she will pay back some of the missing funds as part of a plea settlement."
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