Former City of Martins Ferry Employee Stole $32,000

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Columbus – A former utility clerk stole more than $32,000 in utility payments, according to an audit of the city of Martins Ferry (Belmont County) released today by Auditor of State Dave Yost. 

“The citizens of Martins Ferry worked hard to pay their utility bills, while she skimmed all she could,” Auditor Yost said. “Once she is duly convicted, the judge will be able to order a repayment to the people.”

From January 2010 – July 2013, former utility clerk Holly Dalton compiled daily utility billing and collection activity for review by the city Auditor. Rather than using an available daily report from the city’s computerized utility billing system, Dalton created reports with Microsoft Excel.

Although Dalton’s reports agreed with her deposits into the city’s bank account, auditors identified significant discrepancies between those deposits and collections posted in the city’s utility billing system. The audit determined that $32,414 was not deposited into the city’s bank account during the period. A finding for recovery has been issued against Dalton in the full amount.

Dalton was indicted for theft in office on December 4, 2013. She is set for trial on December 9, 2014.


A full copy of this audit 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.

Carrie Bartunek
Press Secretary