The now-defunct Mid Central Educational Cooperative is paying the U.S. Government back some grant money.

Mid Central out of Platte was at the center of the GEAR UP controversy. Business Manager Scott Westerhuis was embezzling grant money.

The 13 former member school districts all voted over the summer to allow the payment of nearly $300,000 to the U.S. Department of Education.
KELOLAND News is told that money comes from Mid Central’s coffers, not the member districts directly. 

The U.S. DOE is not commenting at this time. 

Meanwhile former Mid Central Director Dan Guericke and former head of the American Indian Institute for Innovation, Stacy Phelps are set to go on trial for fraud and conspiracy next week in Minnehaha County.

Guericke and Phelps are accused of altering contracts to avoid audits which would have followed the grant money once it left Mid Central.

Jury selection begins on Wednesday.

For a look at the KELOLAND Investigates timeline click here.