Ohio Auditor releases findings against Allen Co. RTA


By Sam Shriver - sshriver@limanews.com



COLUMBUS — The state Auditor’s Office has released the 2019 financial audit of the Allen County Regional Transit Authority.

Among the findings were that in 2019, the RTA paid late fees, penalties and finance charges to various retail stores and to a bank for $659.48 as a result of not paying invoices in a timely manner.

Additionally, the following penalty and interest charges were assessed by the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System against the Allen County RTA for the late reporting and payment of 2019 withholdings:

• Feb. 19, 2019: a penalty charge of $146.97 and an interest charge of $30.57 on employer obligations. This was paid on April 3, 2019.

• March 15, 2019: a penalty charge of $736.85 and an interest charge of $129.69 on employer obligations. This was paid on June 11, 2019.

• April 3, 2019: a penalty charge of $81.28 on Feb. 28, 2019, late reporting of retirement contributions. This was paid on June 4, 2019.

• April 4, 2019: an interest charge of $1.82 on employer obligations. This was paid on June 4, 2019.

• April 15, 2019: a penalty charge of $1,105.28 and an interest charge of $365.67 on employer obligations. This was paid on June 11, 2019.

• May 15, 2019: a penalty charge of $1,842.13 and an interest charge of $355.77 on employer obligations. This was paid on June 11, 2019.

• June 5, 2019: a penalty charge of $48.18 for late reporting of Jan. 31, 2019 retirement contributions. This was paid on July 31, 2019.

• June 6, 2019: a penalty charge of $67.46 and an interest charge of $19.64 on employer obligations. This was paid on July 31, 2019.

• June 10, 2019: a penalty charge of $49.87 for late reporting of Feb. 28, 2019 retirement contributions. This was paid on July 31, 2019.

• June 10, 2019: a penalty charge of $49.87 for late reporting of March 31, 2019 retirement contributions. This was paid on July 31, 2019.

• June 10, 2019: a penalty charge of $9.97 for late reporting of April 30, 2019 retirement contributions. This was paid on July 31, 2019.

• June 11, 2019: an interest charge of $22.35 on employer obligations. This was paid on July 31, 2019.

• June 11, 2019: a penalty charge of $104.75 on employer obligations. This was paid on July 31, 2019.

• June 17, 2019: an interest charge of $288.18 on employer obligations. This was paid on July 31, 2019.

The total amount of penalty and interest charges paid to the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System was $5,456.30.

Former Executive Director, Shelia Haney, was the authorized signatory on the account from which these payments were issued, thus a finding for recovery was issued against Haney for $6,115 in favor of the Allen County Regional Transit Authority.

RTA officials had already begun taking steps to correct the problems.

“We realized there would be the same type of findings in the 2019 audit as we were beginning to address the issues,” said Brian Wildermuth, operations director.

“We here at ACRTA began working with an outside consultant in 2019 to do a review of existing financial processes and systems. As problems came to light, corrective changes were made. Corrective actions were put in place to keep this from happening in the future, based off of recommendations of the consultant and the staff. We have multiple checks and balances on any item so more than just one person would be overseeing something as important as this.

The staff here at ACRTA and the board of ACRTA is committed to working with the State of Ohio Auditor’s office in fixing any mistakes as they are brought to our attention.”

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By Sam Shriver

sshriver@limanews.com

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

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