CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A West Virginia House of Delegates leader has asked state agencies to review the professional licenses of four men who have admitted to taking part in a kickback scheme involving the Division of Highways.
House Government Organization Chairman Gary Howell, R-Mineral, sent letters last week to the Board of Registration for Professional Engineers, the Contractor Licensing Board and the state Purchasing Division. Howell wants the agencies to submit reports and timelines that detail whether they have taken steps to revoke the licenses of the men who've entered guilty pleas, The Charleston Gazette-Mail reported (http://bit.ly/2tkaJJs)
"If these people have defrauded the state they should not be in the public or private sector." Howell said.
Andrew P. Nichols, a civil engineering professor at Marshall University, pleaded guilty last week to tax fraud charges in connection with the scheme. Nichols remains on university payroll and holds an engineering license.
Former DOH traffic engineers Bruce Kenney II and James Travis Miller also have pleaded guilty. Kenney has let his license lapse, according to the website, while Miller's license remains active. Mark Whitt, President of Bayliss & Ramey, has pleaded guilty and his company has an active contractor's license.
Federal prosecutors allege Nichols, Whitt, Kenney and Miller illegally diverted highway projects to Dennis Corporation. The DOH engineers received $200,000 in bribes between 2008 and 2013, according to charges filed last year.