Mike Harmon Auditor of Public Accounts

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Auditor Harmon Releases First Volume of Annual Statewide Single Audit of Commonwealth of Kentucky
Report contains 25 findings from APA audit of financial statements

Today, Kentucky Auditor Mike Harmon released the first volume of the annual Statewide Single Audit of the Commonwealth of Kentucky (SSWAK) for Fiscal Year 2018.

The SSWAK Volume 1 report details 25 findings by Auditor Harmon’s office, and contains recommendations to address audit findings for 10 cabinets and state agencies. Five SSWAK findings were considered material weaknesses, and the other 20 findings were considered significant deficiencies. Of the 25 findings, five are repeat findings from the Fiscal Year 2017 SSWAK Volume 1 audit.

 

    

    

 

 

Auditor Harmon: Kentucky’s Total Debt Equal to $12,000 for Every Man, Woman and Child in Commonwealth
Of Kentucky’s total $54.6 billion in debt, estimated $43.3 billion is due to unfunded pensions

Kentucky’s estimated unfunded liability for its retirement systems makes up nearly 80 percent of the Commonwealth’s total debt for Fiscal Year 2018. That’s according to a new data bulletin on debt service released today by Auditor Mike Harmon’s office. Of the $54.6 billion in total debt Kentucky had during FY 2018, an estimated $43.3 billion of that was due to the unfunded pension and other post-employment benefit liabilities.

“As has been widely known, Kentucky’s unfunded pension liability has grown for many years. But what many people don’t know is that the Commonwealth has additional debts of $11.2 billion in appropriation and non-appropriation supported bonds,” Auditor Harmon said. “As a result, the Commonwealth made more than $1.1 billion in principal and interest payments during Fiscal Year 2018 towards this $11.2 billion of bonded debt.”

 

    

    

 

 

Auditor Harmon Releases Results of Financial Statement Audit of Kentucky Retirement Systems
Failure to resolve overpayments from employees to system, waiving of late penalties among three findings in audit report

Auditor Mike Harmon, Kentucky’s 47th State Auditor, today released the results of an audit by his office of the financial statement of the Kentucky Retirement Systems (KRS) for Fiscal Year 2018. The audit details three findings, and makes recommendations to the KRS board and staff on addressing them.

“Our audit details issues regarding millions in overpayments by employers to KRS, and the lack of policies regarding the waiver by KRS of more than $100,000 in penalties for late payments due to the system from employers,” said Auditor Harmon. “We also found issues with KRS not following generally accepted accounting principles in preparing their financial statements.”

 

    

    

 

 

Auditor Harmon Announces 11 Findings from Special Examination of Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources
Report details failure of agency to create an atmosphere of transparency, accountability of public funds

Today, Auditor Mike Harmon released the results of a special examination by his office of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) for the past several fiscal years. Auditor Harmon’s office began the examination of KDFWR after receiving a letter from Don Parkinson, Secretary of the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet asking for a special examination of the agency, which is part of the cabinet. The report details 11 findings and recommendations for the cabinet and KDFWR leadership.

“The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources promotes the agency receives no General Fund tax dollars. But given that a large portion of their funding comes from the sale of hunting and fishing licenses, along with federal grants, which are funded by taxpayers, our exam details the greater need for KDFWR to act in a responsible and transparent fashion in following state laws and regulations when it comes to the use of these dollars,” said Auditor Harmon. “Our exam finds many past and current problems at KDFWR, and that a change in culture is needed.”

 

    

        

     

     

Agreed-Upon Procedures for County Clerks and Sheriffs

Following the passage of Senate Bill 144 during the 2018 session, the Auditor of Public Accounts has discretion to perform “agreed-upon procedures” (AUP) engagements in lieu of a traditional audit for county clerks or sheriffs who meet the criteria established in KRS 43.070(1)(c). An AUP is a type of engagement where specific procedures are performed and results are reported. These engagements target specific subject matter and allow for focused work on specific areas of concern. The AUP process uses a prescribed format required by AICPA attestation standards.

The cost of an AUP engagement is estimated to be 25 to 50% less than the cost of a traditional audit, which presents an opportunity for counties to save on the overall cost of their statutorily required annual audits.

The minimum criteria to be eligible for an AUP includes having no reported audit comments or findings in the most recent audit report of the county clerk or sheriff. Also, a county clerk or sheriff is not eligible for an AUP engagement for the first audit period after election or after experiencing a break in service in that position. In order to be considered for an AUP engagement, county clerks and sheriffs must apply for an AUP engagement rather than a traditional audit beginning with calendar year 2018 audits. Applications should be sent to: Auditor of Public Accounts, Attention: James Royse, 209 St. Clair Street, Frankfort, KY 40601.

 

    

Auditor Harmon: Taxpayers will pay almost least $1.5 billion over 30 years for KentuckyWired
Cost overruns, botched procurement detailed in special examination of statewide broadband project

A special examination by Kentucky Auditor Mike Harmon’s office of KentuckyWired, the statewide broadband project announced in 2014, finds that taxpayers will be on the hook for almost $1.5 billion over 30 years for the project. That is among nine findings detailed in Auditor Harmon’s nine-month examination of the Kentucky Communications Network Authority (KCNA) and KentuckyWired. Auditor Harmon’s report will be referred to the Executive Branch Ethics Commission for further review and possible action by that agency.

“When KentuckyWired was announced by the prior administration, Kentuckians were told they would only be responsible for a $30 million investment approved by the General Assembly in 2014, and the majority of funding would come from private investment,” Auditor Harmon said during the release of the KCNA examination. “What we now find is that, between what has been paid out thus far, what has been bonded, and what we have been obligated to by former leaders, taxpayers are responsible for 93 percent of the total cost for KentuckyWired.”

 

 

     
    
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