Taylor: Trusted Public Employee Pocketed Nearly $38,000

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Union County - Auditor of State Mary Taylor today released separate audits of Washington Township and the North Union Local School District. The reports identify a public employee who abused dual positions with the township and the school district to steal nearly $38,000.
“During our audits we uncovered deliberate schemes by a public employee who abused her positions of trust to steal thousands of dollars,” Taylor said. “Several recommendations are outlined in these reports that public officials could implement to improve financial oversight and to help prevent similar situations from occurring in the future.”
In her report for Washington Township, Taylor outlines how auditors discovered an elaborate scheme established by former township fiscal officer Valerie Cox to pocket $19,117. Cox used pre-signed township invoices to justify bogus payments for personal expenses. She also issued checks in the name of another person without his knowledge and then cashed the checks at a local bank.
Taylor’s report for the North Union Local School District, where Cox simultaneously served as a high school secretary, reveals that Cox failed to deposit $18,531 in student fees. None of the money stolen from the township and the school district, a total of $37,648 has been repaid.
The Auditor of State’s office worked with the Union County Sheriff’s Department, which executed a search warrant of Cox’s home and seized financial records and personal computer equipment. Taylor’s reports have been turned over to Union County prosecutors to determine criminal charges.
Copies of the complete reports are available online: Washington Township and the North Union Local School District.


The Ohio Auditor of State’s office is a leader in the accounting and auditing field, earning prestigious national honors from the Government Finance Officers Association, the National White Collar Crime Center and the National State Auditor’s Association.

Steve Faulkner
Deputy Press Secretary
(614) 644-1111