2007-01-20 / Editorials & Letters

'Watchdog' says audit shows need for better controls

Editor:

To Vic Leavitt and Charles Starr I am very proud of you and wish to say, "Thank you" for expressing your opinions and your feelings regarding the recent concerns in Kirkersville. As most of us realize, it is not always the citizens who are affected by the actions of some of the public officials but also affected are motorists who are just passing through, or trying to.

And to council member Miller: Although your apology to a gentleman who got a speeding ticket was a little bitter-sweet, at the time I thought it was, at least, a step in the right direction. Now, sadly, you took a step backwards by retracting that apology which tells me that you must have caught seven kinds of hell from some of the good ole' boys for apologizing in the first place! It makes no sense that you would uphold a citation that was not legally written! In fact, it makes no sense that any of the Kirkersville officials continue to think they are above the law and can create ordinances REGARDLESS of the law.

And with that in mind, according to public records, an audit was performed on the Village of Kirkersville in 2006. The Village exceeded appropriations by OVER $88,000! The auditor's report states "the Village is appropriating monies that are not in the Village's depository or in the process of collection that were certified to the County Auditor. This may result in a fund deficit.We recommend that the Village comply with the Ohio Revised Code!!"

There was also a FIVE PAGE management letter to Kirkersville officials from the auditors. In this letter, the auditor notes three instances of "Noncompliance Citations." These instances deal with money not being properly certified or appropriated AS IS REQUIRED BY LAW! Included in this letter are EIGHT recommendations from the auditing firm. Here are some of the recommendations:

- Employee Reimbursement/Travel Policy - "We recommend that the Village adopt an employee reimbursement/travel policy to require detailed receipts and items that may not be allowable for reimbursement such as alcoholic beverages, etc. This will help insure that the Village is not spending money on unnecessary or illegal expenditures."

- Petty Cash/Change Funds - "We recommend that the Village adopt procedures to track the receipt and disbursement of petty cash funds at each department prior to the Fiscal Officer replenishing funds. This will help insure that petty cash monies are being used for a proper public purpose."

- Credit Card Policy-Flying J Gas Cards - "It was noted that the Village does not have a credit card policy detailing the items that may not be a proper public purpose. We recommend that the Village implement a thorough credit card policy requiring detailed receipts to support the purchases made."

Just remember that the Kirkersville officials are going to try two more times to get you to pass an operating levy to pay for their wages; credit card expenditures; petty cash expenses; traveling expenses, etc. They got rid of the rules that were in place to insure that our tax dollars were being spent properly. They have no regard for the law and thus have no regard for the citizens or citizen's tax dollars that the law was created to protect.

Bonnie MansfieldKirkersville

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