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Village of Belmore Financial Records “Unauditable”
Columbus – Auditor of State Dave Yost today declared the Village of Belmore “unauditable” after the Putnam County village ignored repeated requests for financial records.
Auditors sent written requests to every village official in May for the financial statements needed to perform the village’s 2016-17 audit. None of the officials responded.
“These officials are depriving taxpayers of their right to a transparent government,” Auditor Yost said. “It’s in the best interest of everyone involved for the village to open its books without further delay.”
In a letter to the village, the Auditor’s office provided a list of information required to complete the audit.
Within 90 days of the date of the letter, the village must revise its financial records and provide the necessary data. Failure to bring accounts, records, and reports to an auditable condition may result in legal action, including the possibility of the attorney general issuing a subpoena to village officials to explain the condition of records. The attorney general may also file suit to compel the officials to prepare and/or produce the required information.
The Auditor’s Local Government Services Section (LGS) is available to village officials to assist in bringing records to an auditable condition. LGS provides a wide variety of services to local governments, including reconstructing financial records and aid in the reconciliation of books.
An entity is removed from the “unauditable” list once the audit is completed and released to the public.
The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,900 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.