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CPA firm gives positive feedback on County audit
Tattnall County Courthouse
County officials received a positive financial review at their called meeting of April 7, 2022.

Trey Scott, Certified Public Accountant (CPA) of Mauldin & Jenkins CPAs and Advisors, who oversaw the audit for the year ending September 30, 2021, for Tattnall County, gave the county officials a positive financial review at their called meeting of April 7, 2022.

“The County earned an unmodified audit report, known as a ‘clean opinion’, which is the highest level of assurance for your audit. The financial statements are considered to present fairly the financial position and results of operations as of and for the year ending September 30, 2021,” Scott said.

As is usual with most governmental audits, accounting recommendations are made. One of the weaknesses noted by Scott was in one of the constitutional officer’s office on the segregation of duties, referring to the appropriate segregation of duties among record keeping, custody, and reconciliation of cash account and other operational functions of that office. This segregation of duties is recommended in order to mitigate the opportunity for misappropriation of assets, although no discrepancies have been noted. Other constitutional officers have complied with this segregation of duties within their respective offices.  County Manager Frank Murphy said that he would work with this office in the near future, with this segregation of duties feasible with the number of employees in that office.

Scott also suggested an improved year-end close process, which he recommended to be implemented prior to the beginning of the audit.

Several old outstanding checks were noticed, and that these county offices need to determine why some of these checks have not cleared and, where necessary, reissue the checks. Other minor improvements were mentioned, which the County will pursue.

Scott mentioned that $30 million in equity is strong for a governmental entity of Tattnall’s size, and the capital asset history over the past three years has been favorable, with a paying down of the bonds and no issues with debt.

“That you have almost four months of expenditures in an Unassigned Fund Balance is good for the county, especially since your fiscal year ends September 30, but the majority of property taxes, which is a significant source of funds for the county, are usually received in October, November, and December,” he said. 

This shows that the County is prepared for contingencies.  He added that the General Fund balance is $6.2 million, an increase of one million since the last audit.

He also commended the county for adhering to their budgets in the various departments and offices. Scott complimented the efficiency of the employees in the county offices in the supplying of documentation and copies of whatever was needed during the audit.

Murphy followed Scott’s comments by reviewing the County’s FY 2021-2022 budget.  With six months into the fiscal year, the remaining budget percent is 50 percent overall, which is where the county wants to be halfway through the fiscal year. The various departments vary in the timing of their revenues and expenditures.