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Taxpayers’ Money Should Be Protected By Town Officials

It’s been five years since the state Comptroller’s Office gave town of Carroll officials recommendations to better handle the town’s bookkeeping.

The first order of business for Russ Payne, new town supervisor, and Susan Rowley, new town clerk, should be to ensure the recommendations are fully implemented.

State officials recommend the town supervisor keep accurate supervisor records, that the town supervisor submit annual financial reports in a timely fashion, that the supervisor provide the town board with monthly supervisor reports and that the town board conduct a comprehensive annual audit of the financial records of all officers who receive or spend money within the town. Three of the recommendations have been partially implemented, while the town is roughly four years behind in submitting yearly financial reports to the state.

Concerns over the town’s books have been broached in the past. The state voiced concerns over the town’s bookkeeping practices in its 2014 audit. In November 2017 former Supervisor Jack Jones Jr. requested a state audit of the town’s swim program after it was suspected that not all of the money collected had been deposited in the bank. Last year, Patty Eckstrom, town councilwoman, called for a review of town clerk records.

Enough is enough. If Payne and Rowley accomplish nothing else in their time in town office, they should create a aystem where the proper reports are prepared and reviewed so that taxpayers’ money is properly protected.

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