Auditor found 'multiple errors' in Woodford clerk's records

gkocher1@herald-leader.comOctober 8, 2013 

State Auditor Adam Edelen

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VERSAILLES — Multiple errors led Woodford County Clerk Judie Woolums to understate a receipts ledger by $12,000 and to overstate a disbursements ledger by $196,000, according to an audit of the clerk's 2012 financial statement released last week by State Auditor Adam Edelen.

The Dec. 31,2012 settlement submitted to Edelen's office "was not complete" and was not mathematically accurate, the audit said. State law requires the auditor to conduct annual audits of the county clerks and sheriffs.

Nothing in the audit indicated any criminal conduct that needed to be referred to law enforcement for further investigation.

But the audit noted "multiple errors from failure to post transactions, transposition of numbers, erroneous postings, and mathematical errors between ledgers and financial statements. As a result of such errors, the receipts ledger was understated by $12,684 and the disbursements ledger was overstated by $196,299."

Woolums said Tuesday the overstatement was due to "putting too many numbers" into a computer.

The audit also found that the clerk's bank reconciliations were performed monthly but did not appear to be accurate. If accurate bank reconciliations were being performed and reviewed to ensure accuracy "other errors ... would have been caught," the auditor said in a news release.

"Because the county clerk failed to maintain an accurate disbursements ledger and perform accurate bank reconciliations, more funds were expended than available, resulting in an overpayment to fiscal court" of $20,048 in monthly fees collected by the clerk's office, the audit said.

"Evidently, I didn't get them reconciled to where they (the auditor's office) thought they should have been," Woolums said. She said fiscal court will return the overpayment.

Woolums said she and another employee are double-checking ledger entries and bank statements to ensure that similar mistakes aren't made in the future.

The county clerk is responsible for collecting certain taxes, issuing licenses, and maintaining deeds and other records. The office is funded through statutory fees collected in conjunction with these duties.

Meanwhile, Woodford Fiscal Court had a clean 2012 audit with no comments from the auditor's office about non-compliance.

Woodford Fiscal Court accepted the county clerk's audit into the record Tuesday, but Magistrate Duncan Gardiner said it was important for Woolums to respond to and make changes as recommended by the auditor.

Greg Kocher: (859) 231-3305. Twitter: @heraldleader

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