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State Auditor completes audit of Madison County

The Madison County budget audit has been completed by Susan Montee, CPA, Missouri State Auditor for the year ending December 31, 2006. The audit is required every four years.

In the opening statement Montee identifies problems with county budgetary and bidding procedures which have been noted in past audit reports; however, little or no improvement has been made and similar problems still exist.

– Actual amounts presented in the budget for the General Revenue Fund differed from the Treasurer’s annual settlement and did not accurately present the cash balance, receipts, or disbursements of the General Revenue Fund. The budgets contained numerous misclassifications for both budgeted and actual amounts and actual disbursements exceeded budgeted amounts for several funds.

The county did not solicit bids or perform other price comparison procedures for some major purchases. In addition, neither the county commissions minutes nor the expenditure records contained adequate documentation of the county’s efforts to compare prices or reasons to support sole source purchase determinations.

Our prior report for the two years ended December 31, 2002, indicated that Madison County’s General Revenue and Special Road and Bridge Funds were experiencing declining cash balances and increasing disbursements. Similarly, during the two years ended December 31, 2006, the General Revenue and Special Road and Bridge Funds’ cash balances were also maintained at significantly low levels, as it appears General Revenue is supplementing the Special Road and Bridge Fund.

The county did not properly assess the value of a real estate purchase and did not properly document how it determined which funds should be used to purchase the property. Supporting documentation for some expenditures was insufficient and the accounts payable process does not provide adequate controls to prevent duplicate payments and ensure goods and services have been received. In addition, the county does not have formal policies regarding the use of cellular phones.

The effective dates for the Collector’s and Assessor’s salary increases may not have complied with state law. Some payments for the services were not handled through normal payroll procedures or reported to the IRS as required. In addition, centralized payroll leave records and complete personnel files were not maintained by the County Clerk.

In the Collector’s office, liabilities are not reconciled to the bank account, partial payment records are not adequate, deposits are not made intact nor on a timely basis, and some disbursements are not made by check. In addition, the former Collector did not properly withhold commissions from tax collections, recalculate the surtax distribution percentages, or properly distribute interest income.

The Sheriff’s office does not have a system for tracking the profit and loss from the sale of commissary items. Monthly bank reconciliations are not performed for the commissary account and some invoices are not marked paid or properly approved. In addition, receipt slips are not issued for monies received and receipts are not deposited intact on a timely basis, money orders are not immediately restrictively endorsed, and voided checks are not properly retained. Inmate monies are maintained in cash, rather than deposited into a bank account. The Sheriff’s Office does not properly document the money bank reconciliation or deposit timely for the fee account, and could not provide authorization for continuing to collect a bond processing fee which was repealed. Also, the Sheriff department’s vehicle fuel usage and operating costs are not adequately monitored.

The Prosecuting Attorney’s office does not perform bank reconciliations, does not issue receipt slips for some monies, and does not deposit timely. The office does not properly monitor court ordered restitution due from defendants or file a monthly report or fees collected.

The report also includes comments related to the county property tax system, written contracts, the schedule of expenditures of federal awards, Tax Increment Financing investments, capital assets, computer controls, and the Circuit Clerk’s and Health Centers controls and procedures.

In response to the report, Presiding County Commissioner John Rauls said “The Commissioners and the County Clerk have already corrected many of the issues and are working on correct the rest as soon as possible.”

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