Lack of Documentation Cited in Family & Children First Council Audit

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Columbus – Lack of documentation for gift cards purchased by the Highland County Family & Children First Council resulted in a $575 finding for recovery, according to an audit released today by Auditor of State Dave Yost.

“Every piece of supporting documentation is a pixel in the financial picture,” Auditor Yost said. “Without the necessary paperwork, it’s impossible to get a complete picture of how tax dollars were spent.”

The council purchased $3,000 in Walmart gift cards during 2013 and 2014 to pay parent representatives for attending Family & Children First Council and Early Childhood

Collaborative Committee meetings. The council distributed the gift cards as payment to avoid having to issue tax forms 1099, according to the report.

Auditors noted one instance where the council did not maintain a receipt for the purchase of gift cards. In addition, auditors identified $575 in gift cards that were unaccounted for. Auditors learned through discussion with Council Coordinator Danielle Ratcliff that on some occasions, she would personally purchase gift cards when needed, and then reimburse herself from the council’s next bulk purchase of gift cards without generating any supporting documentation.

As the council’s coordinator, Ratcliff was responsible for the safekeeping of the gift cards. A finding for recovery in the amount of $575 was issued against Ratcliff.

Additionally, the council did not issue tax forms 1099 for gift cards distributed in excess of $600. This matter will be referred to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

A full copy of this report may be accessed online



The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,800 state and local government agencies.  Under the direction of Auditor Dave Yost, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies and promotes transparency in government.

Brittany Halpin
Press Secretary