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County: Some salaries taken from wrong account

County officials said a negative line item in the county budget came after an old account was billed incorrectly for home incarceration salaries.

Clark County Judge-Executive Chris Pace said during Thursday’s Fiscal Court meeting the old account goes back at least a decade, but the account was changed during fiscal year 2018. The old account was not deleted, but was flagged not to appear in the official reports.

That caused a problem earlier this year when the old account showed a negative balance when the salaries were taken from the old account, he said.

“The budget experts say it shouldn’t be there,” Pace said. “It should be deleted.”

Pace said he has spoken with the developer of the county’s financial software and the account has since been removed.

“Obviously, this had been a deleted line item,” Pace said. “That caused a problem. It has been (deleted). It should have been done a couple years ago. (The account) has been around for a decade, if not longer.”

Clark County Attorney William Elkins said the situation came to the county’s attention when the report was printed and flagged with a negative balance.

He also said the county’s interim treasurer was not aware of the old account or that it was set up not to report.

“My concern was we had an account in the budget that was not created by the Fiscal Court with a negative balance,” Magistrate Travis Thompson said.

In a previous court meeting, Thompson questioned a discrepancy of more than $8,600 in the county’s financial statements involving a number of outstanding checks.

Pace said he and the interim county treasurer tracked down the checks and found all of them, including one to Clark Regional Medical Center for more than $6,300. Pace said there was a remaining $15 discrepancy where a duplicate check was written but never cashed for Cantrell Electric.

“Somebody … made a notation on the check as a duplicate check,” Elkins said.

The court took no action on a transfer request from the jail of about $56,600. Thompson said the jail was showing a negative balance of about $102,000, which would have grown to about $190,000 with bills to approve later in the meeting.

Magistrate Daniel Konstantopoulos made a motion to transfer $200,000 from the general fund to the jail, but Elkins said the discussion was about a third transfer or fixing the budget imbalance, which was not on the agenda or before the court for discussion. The court also had not received information from the jail about how much it would need to finish the fiscal year.

Thursday’s meeting was a special meeting, and the court can only discuss or act on items listed on the agenda.

The transfer order of $56,000 did not receive a motion, and the matter died..

The court later voted to pay the jail bills as long as there is a positive balance.

About Fred Petke

Fred Petke is a reporter for The Winchester Sun. His beats include cops, courts, fire, public records, city and county government and other news. To contact Fred, email fred.petke@winchestersun.com or call 859-759-0051.

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