A scathing report released last week revealed widespread misspending and sexual misconduct at Louisville’s public transit agency. Much of the report focused on then-executive director Ferdinand Risco’s relationship with a contractor who was paid more than $228,000 for no demonstrable work.
That contractor previously worked for another top city official: Tony Parrott, the executive director of the Louisville Metropolitan Sewer District. When he worked in Cincinnati, Parrott paid the same contractor $3 million over five years, a deal one city councilman at the time called “unconscionable.”
This is not a coincidence: Parrott introduced the contractor to Risco.
The referral came just months after an Ohio state audit revealed Parrott had misspent more than $750,000 on bloated, often unnecessary contracts during his time running Cincinnati MSD.
Risco was fired in February after sexual assault and harassment allegations from staff came to light.
The contractor that worked with Risco at TARC was not named in the report because she has accused him of sexual assault. But her attorney confirmed her identity, and the report makes it fairly clear who she is: the same woman who Parrott worked with closely for over a decade in Cincinnati.
In a brief response to emailed questions, Parrott downplayed his role in connecting Risco and the contractor, saying it was simply a referral. He did not offer more details on why he would refer this specific contractor to TARC, or what services he thought she would be best suited to provide.
Jean Porter, a spokesperson for Mayor Greg Fischer, also dismissed the concern, saying Parrott advised Fischer’s office that all he did was introduce Risco and the contractor at a “water equity task force meeting” years ago.
But the contractor told TARC investigators that Parrott was the one who initially reached out to her about an