A former New York City school official has admitted that he falsified records to hide the fact that none of the city's 1,100 public schools received proper inspections for the presence of asbestos during his time in office.
Robert Pardi, the former director of a New York City Board of Education task force on asbestos, confessed last month to directing his staff to file false reports and to certifying that all of the city's schools were properly inspected for asbestos when, in fact, none were.
He pleaded guilty to three federal charges connected to the filing of false information with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Mr. Pardi, who faces up to 11 years in prison and $500,000 in fines, said he had falsified the records because he hoped to be promoted for completing the inspections on time and wanted to protect the city from being fined for missing a May 1989 E.P.A. deadline.
City officials last year responded to the discovery of the bogus records by delaying the opening of schools by two weeks to allow for emergency asbestos inspections. The debacle ultimately cost the city more than $80 million. (See Education Week, Sept. 8, 1993.)