Office of the State Auditor of Missouri
September 30, 2003
The Missouri State Auditor is required by Missouri law to conduct audits only
once every four years in counties, like Henry, which do not have a county
auditor. However, to assist such counties in meeting federal audit
requirements, the State Auditor will also provide a financial and compliance
audit of various county operating funds
every two years. This voluntary service to
Missouri counties can only be provided when
state auditing resources are available and it does not interfere with the State
Auditor's constitutional responsibility of auditing state government.
Once every four years, the State Auditor's
statutory audit will cover additional areas of county operations, as well as the
elected county officials, as required by Missouri's Constitution.
This audit of Henry
County included additional areas of
county operations, as well as the elected county officials. The following
concerns were noted as part of the audit:
Numerous personal phone calls were made
utilizing the Tri-County Child Support office phone line and calling card. We
identified personal calls totaling 6,171 minutes with related charges of
approximately $4,600. These calls were made by the Tri-County assistant
prosecuting attorney and a friend of his daughter. This number of minutes and
amounts do not represent all personal calls. Additional follow up with the
Tri-County assistant prosecuting attorney confirmed there were other personal
calls made. Of the $4,600, $3,300 was paid by the county. The county
has obtained repayments from individuals totaling approximately $894, and is
planning additional review work related to personal phone calls. Because most
of the personal phone call costs were reimbursed to the county by the state
through the federal child support enforcement program, most amounts recouped
by the county for inappropriate calls are due to the state.
The county has not taken action on mid-term
salary increases given to associate county commissioners elected in 1997. On
May 15, 2001 the Missouri Supreme Court handed down an opinion that challenged
the validity of Section 50.333.13, RSMo, which allowed county salary
commissions in 1997 to provide mid-term salary increases for associate county
commissioners. The Supreme Court held this section of law violated Article
VII, Section 13 of the Missouri Constitution, which specifically prohibits an
increase in compensation for state, county and municipal officers during the
term of office. The County Commission
responded that they were complying with the law when accepting these raises.
The newly elected Prosecuting Attorney's
salary was set at $43,350 or approximately $5,915 less than was paid to the
former Prosecuting Attorney during 2002. This salary decrease was not
supported by county salary commission action or a legal opinion.
Problems were noted with Prosecuting Attorney
Bad Check Fund expenditures. Meal costs in excess of the county�s policy were
paid to the former Prosecuting Attorney and his employees for an August 2002
training meeting. The former Prosecuting Attorney and the former assistant
prosecuting attorney were reimbursed for equipment purchases without proper
Sheriff�s department bond receipts totaling at
least $2,513 were received and not deposited during September and October
2002. Through timely reconciliation procedures and follow up on concerns the
Sheriff identified the problem and obtained repayment of the undeposited
monies. The Prosecuting Attorney has filed charges in this matter.
The schedule of expenditures of federal awards
did not accurately report expenditures of numerous federal programs.
There was no documentation that the County
considered other engineering firms when procuring engineering services for a
federal bridge project, as required by state law.
As noted in past audit reports, the county has
been significantly overestimating expenditure amounts budgeted for the Special
Road and Bridge Fund. As a result, administrative service fee transfers from
the Special Road and Bridge Fund to the General Revenue Fund have often
exceeded three percent of actual disbursements. As of December 31, 2002,
$140,000 is due back to the Special Road and Bridge Fund for these excess
Also included in the audit are recommendations
related to county budgetary, bidding, and expenditure procedures. The audit
also suggested improvements in accounting controls and procedures of the
Sheriff, Prosecuting Attorney, County
Treasurer, and Health Center Board.
Complete Audit Report
Missouri State Auditor's Office