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April 15, 2014

No Public Meeting

Commissioners decide not to discuss state audit’s findings with constituents

CLAREMORE —

The Rogers County Commissioners announced Monday they will not host a public meeting to address the findings of the recently released Oklahoma State Auditor’s report.
Commissioner Dan DeLozier said the board would leave further discussion of the audit to the proper authorities.
DeLozier hosted a meeting Friday with other county officials to insure the auditor’s recommendations were put into place.
However, the board discussed and approved the 2012-13 Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards, SEFA including Federal Emergency Management Agency, FEMA Disaster 1754 — one of the primary subjects of the auditor’s report.
The report requires annual approval.
Oklahoma State Auditor Gary Jones questioned approximately $5.5 million in federal disaster grant funding received by Rogers County for the 2008 flood, which washed away a portion of Keetonville Road.
Rogers County District 2 received approximately $13 million in FEMA funding as a result of the natural disaster, even though the road was never repaired.
Now, citizens are questioning commissioner Mike Helm and county clerk Robin Anderson’s role in the management of the FEMA funds, as well as, their ongoing roles in county government as elected officials.
In the report, Jones questioned the $5.5 million in FEMA funds, stating the amounts were “not sufficiently documented with supporting documentation due to lack of documentation, invoices submitted for reimbursement twice, and incorrect charges related to equipment and force-account labor.”
Jones specifically lists findings for various amounts, including $36,476.78, represented in an apparent fictitious invoice that was submitted for reimbursement from Oklahoma Emergency Management (OEM) for various projects: $258,017.59 included invoices that were submitted twice for reimbursement from OEM; $25,853.08 included ‘estimated costs’ submitted for reimbursement in excess of actual amounts paid to vendors and $3,320.27 included project expenses that were submitted twice for reimbursement from OEM.
In addition, $107,451.85 of expenditures could not be substantiated due to a lack of supporting documentation, discrepancies between payroll and project records and discrepancies with the equipment rates charged; $5,255,833.98 of expenditures were claimed for road construction without adequate documentation including detailed invoices, bills of lading, and verification by county personnel as to the quantities of materials used and services rendered on a daily basis  and $72,306 of expenditures were claimed to FEMA equipment code 8333 at the hourly rate of $78.

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