Township revising books

Administrator says human error put township on auditor’s list

“Anytime the books don’t agree it’s an issue, but this is human error and we’ll find what caused the mistake,” Len Roberts, township administrator, said. “The township is on a tight budget, so I can’t say we’re in great financial shape, but that’s a different issue.”

State Auditor Dave Yost’s office announced Friday that the township had been placed on the “unauditable list.” The state determined that the condition of the township’s financial records from Jan. 1, 2012 through Dec. 31, 2013 were not adequate to complete an audit, according to the announcement.

Yost and Mike Botkin, chief auditor of the west region, sent a letter dated Aug. 5 addressed to Damon Woods, township trustee president, and Tracey Edwards, township fiscal officer.

According to the letter:

  • An analysis of the 2013 cash disbursements revealed the bank statements and cash journal indicate there is approximately $47,400 less in disbursements on the bank statements than the amount of disbursements posted to the cash journal.
  • An analysis of the 2013 cash receipts revealed that the bank statements and cash journal indicate there is approximately $67,300 more in cash receipts per the cash journal than the amount indicated as deposited in the bank.
  • The state conducted a bank reconciliation as of Dec. 31, 2013 and that reconciliation indicated that the bank account’s reconciled balance is approximately $20,300 less than the cash journal balance.

Edwards was sworn-in as the township’s fiscal officer this year. She replaced Alfonzo Weatherford, whose term as fiscal officer ended last year.

“He was out of office by the time the auditor started doing the audit,” Roberts said of Weatherford. However, he added that Weatherford was the fiscal officer during most of the period in question. “Tracey was for about three weeks.”

The township has 90 days within the date of the Aug. 5 letter to revise its financial records and provide the necessary data to complete the audit. The township could face legal action if it fails to meet the deadline.

The township has hired a Cleveland-based Certified Public Accountant firm to “assist in reviewing the transactions in order to reconstruct financial records and aid in the reconciliation with the bank statement for the period of April 2013 through December 2013,” Roberts said. He added that not knowing what caused the discrepancy is what lead the township to hire the CPA firm.

Roberts said that township officials took these actions before the township was placed on the non-auditable list.

“While it is too early to speculate on the timeline, we expect this work to be completed well before the 90-day deadline established by the State Auditor,” Roberts said.

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