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Carter has had audit findings, but never lost money, accountant says

John Thompson • Nov 13, 2017 at 10:17 PM

ELIZABETHTON — The Budget Committee of the Carter County Commission heard a report from a member of the county’s Audit Committee on Monday evening that there is no missing money in the county government.

Margaret Moses is a certified public accountant and the owner of an Elizabethton accounting firm who has been a member of the Audit Committee since it was created. She gave a brief description of the committee’s work and explained some of the noteworthy audit findings of the past several years.

Moses said that while there were several findings in last year’s audit, many of those were the result of new personnel who were not familiar with the financial controls between the county’s finance department and the school system. She said those have been resolved and should be reflected in the next audit, which is now underway.

One of the more spectacular findings in recent years was the result of the usage of some accounting software that was not able to meet state requirements. She said that software was used in several counties in the state and resulted in findings in those counties as well.

The problem in Carter County resulted in the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office not being able to resolve who the proper recipient should be for approximately $400,000 the office was holding in deposits.

Over the years, Moses said the office has worked diligently to find the proper recipients, and the money has now been reduced to about $40,000 that still hasn’t been resolved.

Moses told the committee that there has not been any findings that county money was missing.

In other matters, the committee approved two transfers of funds from the Carter County Landfill’s funds.

One transfer would authorize the Landfill to contract with a surveyor to map out the footprint of the Construction and Demolition site, which is nearing capacity and will be closed in the next few years. The survey will ensure the Landfill does not exceed the boundaries of the site as it reaches its final dimensions.

The second expenditure was $25,000 to purchase an specialized incinerator, which uses a curtain of air to prevent air pollution. The incinerator would resolve the county’s problem with disposing of brush and wood.

Both fund transfers will require no new money, but will require the approval of the full commission, which meets next Monday.

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