SPENCERVILLE — The Village of Spencerville was placed on the “unauditable” list Monday by Ohio Auditor of State Keith Faber for “a lack of financial records and bank reconciliations.”
“Poor financial records lead to poor service for taxpayers,” Faber said in a press release. “ I encourage village leadership to get their books in order promptly.”
Spencerville officials could not be reached for comment.
In just one of three sections detailing the auditor’s findings, the report found 12 errors concerning property taxes and intergovernmental accounts, five adjustments to the water fund debt, five adjustments in charges for service, an incorrect recording of intergovernmental receipts in the general fund, 10 cash reconciliations errors, four miscellaneous issues and four classification errors.
The 2018 audit also reported that the village’s monthly bank reconciliations in a six month period from July 2016 to December 2016 “contained multiple long outstanding and unusual reconciling items and errors that were listed as ‘other adjusting factors’. Such changes ranged from $5,222 to $54,413.”
The changes resulted in false information being provided to Spencerville’s Village Council during that same period.
For all three sections — a list of errors spanning eight pages — the auditor’s office notes that “we did not receive a response from officials to this finding.”
The “unauditable” list — currently comprising nine public municipalities across the state — declares that the state of the organization’s records are “not adequate to complete an audit”.
Spencerville, along with the Village of Macksburg located south of Cambridge, joined the list Monday. Of the five villages currently on the list, Spencerville is the largest by population.
According to the auditor’s office, Spencerville officials will have 90 days to provide the documentation necessary to complete an audit. Once an audit is completed, the village will be struck from the list.
If officials miss the deadline, the Ohio Attorney General may take legal action to ensure the auditor receives the necessary information to conduct an audit.
Ohio’s auditor of state routinely examines local governments and state agencies to highlight potential bookkeeping errors and/or misuse. Spencerville’s last audit was released in November of 2018, which examined the years 2015 and 2016.
The latest report released in 2018 states that “the village did not properly classify various receipts and disbursement transactions due to lack of proper procedures in place for recording activity and the lack of proper reviewing and monitoring procedures of financial information.”
The full audit released in 2018 can be found online.
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.