Jackson D. Hartman, CPA (ret.) and CGMA, and a Member of Cobb EMC for fifteen years, has held positions in finance, marketing, administration, operations and consulting with companies ranging from startups to Fortune 500 and NYSE companies. Now retired, he and his wife Emily live in Woodstock’s Towne Lake area, The Fairways.
While great progress has been made since the indictment of Cobb EMC’s former CEO and the wholesale replacement of his Board of Directors, several issues have prompted Jack to run against the incumbent District 9 Board Member.
• Appearance of conflict of interest by the District 9 incumbent
• Inaction on the forensic audit leaving many wrongdoers unpursued
• Needed enhancement of current Bylaws to protect Members’ interests
• Protecting Members through constant focus on lowering costs
Appearance of conflict of interest: In the August 26, 2014 Board meeting, Mr. Hartman’s incumbent opponent reported that he had joined ESP Energy as a partner and had submitted a power project bid to a Cobb EMC affiliate, Green Power EMC. He further maintained that a Cobb EMC Director submitting power project bids to Cobb EMC affiliates and competitors for personal gain was not a conflict of interest. The incumbent later stated that he was no longer involved in solar energy projects.
Jack is very concerned, particularly after the release of the forensic audit, that the present Bylaws do not specifically prohibit Directors from bidding to affiliates and competitors of Cobb EMC. Jack has sponsored a Bylaw change to prohibit this type of behavior by Cobb EMC Directors and will fight to insure that the type of self-dealing that was highlighted in the recently publicized forensic audit cannot occur in the future.
Inaction on forensic audit: It appears the current Board feels its task with the forensic audit is finished. Despite Atlanta Journal Constitution reports of “misconduct at Cobb EMC more pervasive than previously known” and “self-dealing and conflicts of interest abounded at the Marietta utility”, Cobb EMC’s current Chairman was quoted as saying, “We made a commitment that we would do a complete and thorough forensic audit. We feel like we’ve fulfilled that commitment.”
The work has only begun. Jack Hartman believes that it is imperative that Cobb EMC must pursue to the limits of the law those complicit and responsible for the misdeeds that drained what may have been hundreds of millions of dollars from Cobb EMC Members. While the current Chairman contends, “we have spent enough legal fees to last a lifetime”, further legal effort is absolutely necessary to bring all violators of Cobb EMC’s trust to justice and to preserve the right to recover unimaginable millions of dollars in misappropriated funds from the parties responsible. Legal remedies are not yet beyond reasonable hope.
Members, this is your money; do you want it back? The vigorous pursuit of those who enriched themselves at Cobb EMC’s expense should return funds to the Membership and protect against further acts. Recovery of fraudulent losses can then be applied to reduce the exorbitant indebtedness strapped onto the Cobb EMC Membership. Your monthly bill includes the cost of this high indebtedness – over $25 million in fiscal 2014 interest.
Bylaw enhancements: Three bylaw petitions have been submitted by Members to further enhance transparency, ethics and Member involvement and oversight at Cobb EMC. While work continues with the Ad Hoc Bylaw Working Group to produce Board- sponsored versions of these changes, as this has not yet happened, Jack fully supports this year’s Member-sponsored changes.
Constant focus on costs: Jack Hartman believes the mission of Cobb EMC should be to provide Members reliable service at the lowest possible cost. He is committed to employ his broad experience in industry to help Cobb EMC achieve its full potential to provide low-cost, reliable electrical service to its Members.
Jackson D. Hartman’s career includes positions at Fortune 500 & NYSE companies: Clark Equipment Company, Owens-Corning Fiberglas Corp. and Gleason Corp.
• Transmission, distribution and substation contracting for electric public utilities
• Underground electric distribution for highway departments and developments
• Automated material handling, automatic guided vehicles and robotics
• International contract-manufacture and marketing of consumer electronics
• Aftermarket automotive parts manufacturing
• Lift truck manufacturing, marketing, leasing and rental
• International and domestic accounting, budgeting and tax management
• International and domestic banking relations and cash flow management
• Bankruptcy turnaround, division turnaround and business acquisition
• Legal and CPA liaison, risk management, human resources & procurement
• Utility line truck and over-the-road truck fleet operations oversight
• Construction contract estimating, bidding, negotiation, approval and renegotiation
Education and Affiliations
University of Toledo – BBA Accounting and International Marketing
Certified Public Accountant (CPA) – retired, formerly licensed in Ohio and Illinois
Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA), accreditation with AICPA
Boy Scouts of America – Council Board, District Chair and Camp Fund Custodian
Georgia insurance adjuster – retired: industrial, commercial and residential losses