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Lee County attorney renews request for VR Labs documents

Oct. 12, 2012


Lee County commission Chairman John Manning said Friday the commission won’t take up the issue of the $5 million grant to VR Laboratories Inc. while the county attorney’s investigation continues.

In a letter sent Thursday, County Attorney Michael Hunt asked VR’s CEO, former Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp, to provide proof that the company has created the nine high-paying jobs it described in the annual progress report it filed in August.

“We have a process in place where there’s communication in place between the CEO of VR Labs and the county attorney,” Manning said, adding that he stands behind Hunt’s demands to see VR’s payroll documentation and other records.

The progress report included salaries and job titles but nothing further.

“To date, the county is unable to verify the information presented in the annual report,” Hunt’s letter states.

The letter also asks for “a timeline with enough specificity and description, so that the county may be assured that VR is moving forward, and taking all measures necessary to commence its contemplated commercial enterprise.”

In particular, Hunt asks in the letter for an expected date when the bottling equipment for VR’s plant will be “either on the VR site, or located within Lee County.”

Kottkamp has filed a timeline, the letter states, but it’s “too generic and not descriptive enough to have any real value for the county.”

Kottkamp could not be reached for comment Friday.

Kottkamp previously said in a letter that VR is not required to provide payroll records as Hunt requested but was willing to make employee information available for inspection with redactions.

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