July 24, 2013 — During last week's Fiscal Court meeting, County Attorney Patrick Flannery reported that about $70,000 in leftover funds had been located in an old child support payroll account.
Flannery also stated that the money would be transferred immediately to the county general fund.
“I didn't find out about the money until June. The state Child Support Office contacted me and let me know that $70,000 was leftover in one of the accounts of the former county attorney,” said Flannery when asked about the surplus money.
“I had numerous email exchanges with Frankfort about the funds and then let the Fiscal Court know that they would be getting the money.”
The funds were found by Frankfort officials in an old account belonging to Bob Miller, who was Flannery's predecessor as County Attorney. They account in question dates back nearly three years and deals with payroll funds for child support office workers. It is entirely separate from the money that is paid out on behalf of children.
“The county attorney's office and the Fiscal Court had a contract whereby the Fiscal Court would advance payroll funds for the child support staff to the county attorney's office and then would subsequently bill us for the amount owed. We would then bill the state child support office for the money needed to reimburse the Fiscal Court,” said Miller, elaborating on the payroll procedure when he was in office.
At this point, all parties involved have indicated that there doesn't appear to be any wrongdoing in the situation and that the money was inadvertently retained in the old account.
“At some point, due to a computer error, the Fiscal Court stopped billing our office for the full amount. That's why funds were left in that account. I felt that money, in all likelihood, was owed to the Fiscal Court,” Miller said. “An accountant was hired to audit the account and he made the same determination.”
Joe Lewis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 286-4201.