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Who is In (or Out) of Control In Metro

The recent release of the 2008 Payroll Activity Audit that was conducted by the Louisville Metro Government Office of Internal Audit under the direction of Michael S. Norman has brought some notice to the Metro Council. It should also bring about a bit of interest to the citizens of Louisville as well.

  The audit points out various occurrences in the payroll activity that resulted in overpayment of individuals, as well as other details that caused the auditor to the opinion that “the administration of the payroll activity needs improvement”. Under the finding of “Processing Mistakes” there is mentioned an incidence with an employee that was due to be paid for ten days, but the employee was instead paid for eighty days. The result was  “an overpayment of $27,759 in gross pay and Metro pension costs of approximately $9,402”. Though this mishap occurred in April of last year, it was not detected until the Internal Auditor’s office conducted their audit.

  Another payment was not addressed in Personnel Policy, but is of great interest because the employee was paid $85,874 for “service time purchase pay” and an additional $3,385. To make the matters worse, this has been approved, and will continue for another two years. Under this statement, as well as many of the other facts addressed in this audit comes the words “it does not appear that pertinent authorities, such as the County Attorney or Human Resources, reviewed the activity to ensure its appropriations and compliance with applicable laws, requirements, and guidelines.”

  In the Department of Finance and Administration’s Corrective Action Plan, which is included at the end of the audit is a statement that appears to disagree that “pertinent authorities” did not overview the expenditures of the government. The statement also brings about the question of who is really in, or out, of control in the city.

  The Action Plan states that “all of the examples sited under Policy Compliance and Terminated Compensatory Pay were appropriately reviewed and approved by Human Resources, Finance, and the Mayor’s Office.” In the paragraph following this quote, (found on page 12 of 12 in the Audit), is the statement that the Director of Human Resources, “at the direction of the Mayor, established the policies referenced in the report and maintains the authority to make policy decisions on a case by case basis.”

  While the audit states that “pertinent authorities” did not review the various problems with the payroll, the Department of Finance states that they, under the direction of the Mayor’s office, have reviewed the various payroll issues.

  The mayor, Jerry Abramson, has had numerous problems overseeing financial matters. The Cordish Group fiasco, the moneys that he has spent ensuring that friends receive good jobs, his many deputy mayors that receive rather lucrative funds, and now various payroll issues that he directly reviews and “maintains the authority to make policy decisions on a case by case basis.” With all of these issues, and the facts now raised in the current audit, one must wonder: Who is really in, (or out), of control in the Metro?

July 31, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , ,

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