Liberty Township Audit Identifies $3,900 Overpayment
Columbus - Overpayments for legal counsel led to $3,926 in findings for recovery in an audit of Liberty Township (Trumbull County) released today by Auditor of State Dave Yost.
“The checks have to follow the contract,” Auditor Yost said. “When the numbers don’t add up, tax dollars fall through the cracks.”
The township employed Attorney Mark Finamore as legal counsel in 2012 and 2013. To pay for his services, the board of trustees passed resolutions approving a monthly retainer of $1,600 for up to 16 hours of work, which it paid in bi-weekly payments of $800, and a rate of $100 per hour for any additional hours of work.
However, township administrators said it was their intent to pay Finamore a weekly retainer of $400 per week, not $1,600 per month as stated in their resolutions. As a result, the township paid Finamore a total of $38,926 in 2012 – an overpayment of $926, and $66,771 in 2013 – an overpayment of $3,000.
A finding for recovery was issued against Finamore in the amount of $3,926. Finamore has repaid the entire amount to the township.
Auditor Yost placed Liberty Township in fiscal caution on October 3, 2013 due to incorrect fund use.
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.