Youngstown mayor not concerned about being implicated in state a - News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Mayor McNally says city actions based on legal advice

Youngstown mayor not concerned about being implicated in state auditor's probe

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A Mahoning County Sheriff's cruiser parked outside Marchionda's Poland home A Mahoning County Sheriff's cruiser parked outside Marchionda's Poland home
Dominic Marchionda Dominic Marchionda

Sources tell 21 that a warrant used to search the home and offices of Youngstown developer Dominic Marchionda will also allegedly contain the names of three high-ranking Youngstown city officials.  

Although those city officials are not being named for now since the search warrant is sealed, Youngstown Mayor John McNally tells 21 News he is not concerned about possibly being implicated.

The Ohio Auditor's Office is the lead agency on the case with help from the Mahoning County Sheriff's Department, and assistance from BCI's Cyber Unit.

Just after 9:00AM on Thursday simultaneous raids were conducted at Marchionda's home at 7886 Via Attillio in Poland, and at his offices of the NYO Property Group on the third floor of the First National Bank Building in downtown Youngstown.

Officials have not disclosed the nature of the search, and no charges have been filed against Marchionda.

It is not known if the search is related to a November 30, 2015, motion filed in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court by the attorney representing Marchionda and three of his properties.

That motion sought to quash a subpoena issued by Ohio Auditor David Yost.

According to the motion, the auditor was seeking documentation related to Marchionda, as well as his Erie Terminal, US. Campus Suites and Wick Properties.

Marchionda's attorney at the time said the the documents being sought were related to “an unknown investigation.”

Although the motion said that the state had refused to disclose the nature of the investigation or the person being investigated, the motion was dropped a couple of months later at the request of Marchionda's lawyer.

About a month before the motion was withdrawn, 21 news asked Youngstown Director of Community Planning and Economic Development, T. Sharon Woodberry about the subpoenas.

She told 21 News she was unaware of the subpoenas, but that the regular state audit had been done sometime before that date.

She said the city had not received any indication from the state that there were any concerns with the projects completed by Dominic J. Marchionda.

Woodberry said the city followed a legal opinion that they are able to use water and waste water funds for economic development projects as long as they are related to water and waste water projects, such as plumbing, sewer management plans, storm water runoff, etc.

Woodberry said all grant money given by the city to Marchionda met these standards, and at the time of the regular audit, the city turned over all of its documentation regarding the projects and had not been asked for any more information.

Mayor John McNally tells 21 News that representatives with the State Auditor's office met with him weeks ago for what he perceived as a courtesy stop, and to find out more about how "water and waste water" funds are being used to help fund economic development projects.

"I met with a representative from the Attorney General's Office and two or three representatives from state auditor's office maybe a month to five weeks ago.  And they had asked to meet with me to let me know as mayor of the city that they were looking into one property transaction prior to me becoming mayor to make sure that the water and waste water dollars were spent the way that they were supposed to be spent.  They wanted some more specifics but that was the gist of things.  So I'm not 100% certain that it's related to today's events but they're keeping me up to date."  

We asked McNally if he was concerned about being implicated in an investigation like this and he said not at all.  He says the city has consulted attorneys when they've had questions, "So it's something I'm comfortable with as long as the dollar are spent appropriately."

Marchionda's Cleveland Attorney John McCaffrey says because the search warrant and the affidavit in support of the search warrant are sealed at this time they are not commenting until they can see what Marchionda is being accused of.

According to the NYO Property Group website, the company's portfolio includes several residential and commercial properties, including the Stambaugh Building, Metropolitan Savings & Loan, Wick Tower, Flats at Wick, Erie Terminal Place, and the Realty Tower.

Stay with 21 News for the latest on this developing story.

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