July 26, 2015
We have heard nothing but EXCUSES from this BOC for the past 2 years. Anything and everything is always someone else’s fault. During the audit presentation, Comm. Trammell asked the auditor, “It would be virtually impossible for one of us to have caught that, would it not?” This was his question to help defend himself and the BOC for not knowing anything about the misappropriation (theft) of county money in the P&Z office.
Additionally, Comm. Trammell said “the guys” were only in the office—at best—once or twice a week. That may be the “other guys” on the BOC, but not him. Trammell was in the office almost every day for an hour or more; and Comm. Pennamon was there almost as often.
The real problem is this BOC has failed to listen to anyone other than Karen Degges. No matter what she told them, even if others questioned what she said or what was presented as fact, they paid no attention. Take for instance the following citizen’s comment on March 2, 2015:
This citizen wanted to know why it had been 53 days since he gave the County a check for his business license and it had not yet cleared his bank account (something else Sherry Braley was in charge of). Do you think the BOC started checking into this situation to see if other checks were just as late being deposited?
The FY14 audit shows there were problems with deposits the year before as well. The auditor’s presentation of the FY14 deposits for P&Z are shown here:
At every financial presentation, the BOC has been told everything is great—money is coming in and no one is over budget. No questions were ever asked.
TWG questioned the validity of the PowerPoint presented to the BOC in February 2015. When discussing this with Comm. Luke, he said, “It all came right out of the audits.” Again, he and the others (with the exception of Comm. Pennamon) believed every word, and Comm. Trammell complimented Karen Degges on “all her good work”; even though it was totally bogus and the BOC has never taken the time to verify anything for themselves.
Just in the last few months, numerous things have been questioned by the public and TWG, but ignored by the BOC— from hiring more and more people, to raises for Sherry Braley; from a missing audit to higher taxes; from violations of policy to gross absenteeism. And the list goes on…..but the BOC does not listen, does not ask questions, does not verify anything.
So yes, this BOC did have a way of knowing and numerous signs were pointed out to them, not just once, but repeatedly. If you refuse to ask questions, if you refuse to verify anything—even once in a while, and if you refuse to even sign checks but approve them a month after they have been written, sent off, and cleared the bank, then it is going to be hard to know what is going on.
Commissioners, just because you choose to “be in the dark” don’t say you had no way to know. It is your job, your fiduciary duty TO KNOW, and we all expect you to step up and do your job or step aside and let someone else take your place.
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