Whitley County Clerk Kay Schwartz received relatively good news regarding her fee account Thursday, according to information in a release from the office of Kentucky Auditor of Public Accounts Mike Harmon.
The review of the 2018 fee account only identified three issues that the clerk had to respond to.
State law requires the auditor to conduct annual audits of county clerks and sheriffs. In 2018 the Kentucky General Assembly, following a recommendation by the state auditor, passed legislation that allows county sheriff’s and clerks that meet certain criteria to apply for an Agreed-Upon Procedures (AUP) engagement in lieu of an audit of their fee account.
The intent of the change, which became effective in July 2018, was to reduce audit costs for sheriffs and clerks that have a history of clean audits, while still maintaining an appropriate level of accountability.
The Whitley County Clerk applied for and received approval from the Auditor of Public Accounts (APA) to obtain an AUP engagement for calendar year 2018 in accordance with KRS 43.070(1)(c). AUP reports present the procedures performed and the results of those procedures, called findings.
Auditors performed the procedures, which were agreed to by the Whitley County Clerk, on receipts and disbursements, excess fees, recordkeeping, and leases, contracts, and liabilities for the period January 1, 2018 through December 31, 2018.
The AUP engagement identified three exceptions.
One exception noted that one selected disbursement did not have supporting documentation from the vendor. Disbursements were for official business. Credit card disbursements were for official business.
The county clerk’s response to the exception was that her office had corrected this issue.
A second exception noted that excess fees due to fiscal court were recalculated and do not agree to the actual bank balance. There is $4,684 in additional excess fees due to the fiscal court.
The county clerk’s response to the exception was that this variance is due to her office’s Insurance Escrow Account, and that her office would take the recommendation of the auditor and transfer the funds by the end of the year.
The third exception noted that the county clerk’s lease agreements and contract payments agreed to cost schedules and the services received were appropriate for official business and properly authorized. However, liabilities requiring disclosure were not properly disclosed on the fourth quarter financial statement.
The county clerk’s response was that her office would take the recommendation of the auditor.
The county clerk’s responsibilities include collecting certain taxes, issuing licenses, maintaining county records and providing other services. The clerk’s office is funded through statutory fees collected in conjunction with duties.