Monday, September 24, 2012

Payne Resigns

A day after the Indianapolis Star published an in-depth story discussing DCS Director James Payne's role in a drawn out child custody and child neglect case involving his grandchildren, which questioned whether he crossed ethical boundaries, Gov. Mitch Daniels has accepted Payne's resignation. Daniels' office had denied any prior knowledge of Payne's active involvement in the case for the past two years, a claim contradicted by Payne. Payne blasted the Star's report yesterday as "despicable," noting that he hadn't been able to visit his grandchildren since last Christmas and that the agency he administered ultimately decided without interference from him that it was in the childrens' best interests to remain in their mother's custody. Fox 59 News has more on Payne's statement and the Governor's comments concerning Payne's resignation, which offered words of praise for his service to the state:

"It is clear that the story of my family's person circumstances will continue to be public and that there is no concern by those about the impact this will have especially on my grandchildren," Payne wrote in his letter to Daniels. "Therefore, in fairness to my family and to all my fellow co-workers at DCS, I resign effective today."
Daniels responded with a statement, saying, "I respect (Payne's) view that his family be spared further harsh criticism, and that a difficult personal dispute, not of his own making, could be misused by those with political or special interest agendas to falsely disparage the excellent work he and his DCS co-workers have done over the last eight years."
Daniels continued, "The leading national authorities are unanimous in praising Indiana's improvements in child protection, often labeled 'worst to first,’ during Jim Payne's tenure. In the most recent measurements year, the number of fatalities among children under DCS oversight fell to four, an all-time low.

1 comment:

CircleCityScribe said...

...long overdue!