Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Holcomb responds directly to Meffert's allegations

I finally read all of the materials you have posted on your blog. Regarding the accusation that I was trying to pay myself nearly $1 Million:

- As a Tulane faculty member I worked under a fixed salary. Tulane managed every aspect of my relationship with eXOS. There is no "conflict of interest" if all relationships are disclosed AND APPROVED in advance.

- If you review the last several pages of the COPS grant you will see the approved distribution of all funds. The document lists what was approved by the U.S. DOJ. The City and Tulane decided to have a single contract with eXOS in order to manage several subcontracts. This saved the City and Tulane money and time. Meeting the timing of a contract deliverable is an acceptable "sole source justification". The vast majority of the money that was to flow through eXOS went to small Louisiana engineering consulting firms as listed. Additionally, the largest eXOS line item would have gone to an experienced government contract manager to ensure all of the DOJ paperwork and documentation was delivered properly and on time. He was not an eXOS employee and he is the same individual that assisted the Transportation Security Agency (TSA) in hiring its first 15,000 employees. All of the staff to be hired by eXOS were coming from Tulane and LSU (young engineers). Under the Greg Meffert approach, tax payer dollars went out of state to Motorola, Dell, Cisco, and Microsoft!!!!!

- Tulane is a "not-for-profit" and complied with government labor charges. It would be impossible for Greg Meffert to find lower cost engineering labor for this initiative.

- It would also be impossible for me to "steal" grant funds since I was many levels removed from the financial transaction process of the City and Tulane. Since no money was awarded, how could I steal it?

- Tulane owns stock in eXOS (250,000 shares) and the relationship was pre-approved by the Tulane General Counsel nearly a year before Tulane was invited by the City of New Orleans to assist in the U.S. DOJ COPS grant response. The relationship between Tulane and eXOS allowed the sharing of intellectual property giving Tulane access to millions of lines of software source code to implement solutions, which eXOS could sell commercially outside of the grant effort. Check out the very popular Eudora email software. It was produced under a similar relationship. Tulane and all Universities have innumerable business relationships of this type, which is key to technological innovation in the U.S.

Anyone that says that there was a "conflict of interest" on my part, that I received any direct financial gain, or that I misappropriated grant money is intentionally lying.

Remember that Greg Meffert stopped then redirected the grant after it was approved and awarded. He cycled through multiple approaches to kill the grant until his final attempt worked by sending a false official statement to the U.S. Department of Justice. If the U.S. DOJ had only verified Greg Meffert's claims in his letter I am confident he would be in jail right now. It is too easy to prove that he lied. Unfortunately, Tulane does not like bad press, of any kind, and directed me to move on to other efforts.


Sincerely,

Grant K. Holcomb

3 comments:

ashley said...

It's becoming crystal clear. At first, I thought (years ago) that it was Tulane's incompetence and greed that caused this. Since Cowen's running the show over there, one can easily forgive me this.

I underestimated Meffert and Nagin's greed.

Vastly underestimated.

Slate said...

Holcomb is correct in my opinion. Meffert SHOULD be in jail. He should be liable for this nightmare that he perpetrated through sheer unadulterated greed and evidently, ego.

This is just almost to horrific to fathom.

My husband and I were back here within a week of the Federal Flood. We saw first hand the problems the cops were having communicating with other precincts and districts. That it could have been avoided IS a crime. Period.

Anonymous said...

WOW! Thank you for your openness Mr. Holcomb. This is the sort of public dialogue that we need.