TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

November 2, 2012

Whitley Sheriff’s Office receives good audit


The Times-Tribune

CORBIN — Times-Tribune Staff Report

2012 Whitley Sheriff's Audit.pdf

Whitley County Sheriff Colan Harrell received a good report from the Kentucky state auditor’s office Thursday.

This audit comes on the heels of the state’s summer review of former Whitley County sheriff Lawrence Hodge’s 2010 tax settlement account audit.

That review found several non-compliance issues, including that Hodge failed to segregate accounting duties among his staff, he collected taxes before signing the official receipt, he failed to settle taxes for prior years by depositing personal funds to eliminate the reported known deficit of more than $87,000, and he failed to remit to the state treasurer tax escrow funds held for more than three years.

Hodge currently serves a 15-and-a-half-year sentence in federal prison in Ohio for money laundering, extortion and drug distribution.

This newest audit, which covers Jan. 1 - April 15, 2011, shows Harrell’s financial statement fairly presents taxes charged, credited and paid.

It also noted no instances of non-compliance and that the office’s reporting and operating procedures were acceptable.

State Auditor Adam Edelen released the audit, required annually by state law.

To comply with this law, the auditor issues two reports. The first audits the sheriff’s tax account and the second report audits the fee account used for operating costs.

Harrell’s responsibilities include collecting property taxes, providing law enforcement and duties pertaining to the county fiscal court and courts of justice. Funding for the sheriff’s office comes from statuary commissions and fees collected through these duties.