State audit finds flaws in Union County school finances

State audit finds flaws in Union County school finances

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MAYNARDVILLE (WATE) - An annual financial report of Union County by the state comptroller's office found flaws in the handling of school system funds.

Expenditures exceeded appropriations in five major categories of the general purpose school fund, according to Comptroller Justin Wilson's report on the year ended June 30, 2011.

Auditors broke down the overages as:

  • $2,368 in special education
  • $12,500 in vocation education
  • $923 for the board of education
  • $8,986 in operation of the plant
  • $387 in transportation
  • Those overages violate state statutes.

    Auditors also say four years' worth of unpaid lunch charges weren't reimbursed to the school nutrition program.

    A corrective action plan from November says the board of education will reimburse the school nutrition program $24,000.

    The payments will be issued in four portions of $6,000, along with current student debts, by June 30 each year through 2014.

    The report also says the school department didn't solicit competitive bids for computers and phone equipment for its new Paulette Elementary School.

    A state statute requires competitive bids to be solicited through newspaper ads on all purchases estimated at more than $10,000.

    The comptroller wrote to county Mayor Micheal Williams and county commission about the report on September 23.

    It includes reviews of finances for the mayor's office and the highway superintendent's office.

    Director of Schools Wayne Goforth was suspended without pay in a school board vote on October 19, and Marilyn Toppins was appointed as interim director of schools.

    Toppins says Goforth remains on suspension, but he was granted his director's pay on November 21. She's a teacher being paid at her salary to serve as interim director.

    The school board is scheduled to discuss the director's office at its meeting on January 12.

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