July 24, 2014 - 08:18
     
Audit shows overspending in school system
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Polk County had a relatively clean State Audit this year, with eight findings and recommendations, but the school system was cited for overspending.

Polk County had a relatively clean State Audit this year, with eight findings and recommendations, but the school system was cited for overspending. Polk County has a material recurring audit finding because the director of accounts and budgets does not maintain accounting records for the Road Department.

The school system was cited for having expenditures that exceeded appropriations. $21,329 was overspent for the Alternative Instruction Program, $5083 was overspent in Attendance, $3181 was overspent in the Special Education Program, and $11,186 was overspent in Regular Capital Outlay, the report said.

According to the Audit Report, the school system deficiency exists because management failed to hold spending within limits authorized by the County Commission, and failed to correct the finding noted in the prior-year audit report. This deficiency resulted in unauthorized expenditures.

Most of the findings for other county government relate to shared use of cash drawers, duties not being segregated, and money not being deposited within three days of receipt. All county offices were cited for not segregating duties adequately. The County Clerk and Sheriff were cited for not depositing money within three days of receipt.

The Court Clerk was cited for a cash shortage. Last July, former employee Monique Ledford pled guilty in Criminal Court for the theft of those funds.

The State reccommends Polk County have a central system of accounting, budgeting, and purchasing for all departments. Polk County operates under the provisions of the Fiscal Control Acts of 1957, which provide for a central system covering all funds administered by the county executive and highway department, but not the school system.

Funds under the supervision of the road department are maintained by employees of the road department. “The absence of a central system of accounting, budgeting, and purchasing has been a management decision by the County Commission resulting in the decentralization and some duplication of effort,” the report said.

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