TACOMA -- KING 5 News has learned the City of Tacoma has suspended an employee.

It is because of his connections to Silas Potter, the man at the heart of the Seattle Schools scandal.

Potter ran a program that was supposed to help minority businesses compete. An audit revealed $2 million in public money that couldn't be accounted for.

Percy Jones, Jr. worked closely with Potter and he does the same kind of work for the City of Tacoma.Jones is the coordinator of the Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUB) program.

Friday, an investigation concludedthat Jones violated the city's ethics code but he did not profit from his dealings with Potter.

The investigator says Jones' work calendar shows he attended more than 70 meetings and classes related to the Seattle School's training program.

The investigator found this was sometimes on city time, with a city vehicle, even though it wasn't related to Jone's work for the City of Tacoma.

Jones helped run training programs forPotter,who's now under criminal investigation.

Potter headed the district's regional small business development program out of school headquarters.

Both Jones and Potter didn't tell their superiors last year when they started a private company by the exact same name.

Auditors say Potter convinced public agenciesthey were writing checks for minority training to school district when they were actually being cashed by the private company.

While Jones would not speak with KING 5, he told auditors he was in the dark about all this.

The investigator Tacomahired concluded Jones made no money off of this schemeand that his motivation seemed to be he just thathe wanted to help minority businesses. Still, there's a conflict of interest with what he did on city time and the city manager has suspended him for three days without pay next week.
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