May 23, 2006
County Faces More Financial Challenges
advised the TWG that Susan Raynor, recently hired
Chief Financial Officer, will be leaving after working for
Jasper County approximately 6 months. Ms. Raynor
came into a serious financial situation according to the
audit for the year ending on 12-31-04. The audit report
was highly critical, indicating that the personnel on board
then could not handle the financial posting and reporting.
Ms. Raynor was hired because she had experience in the accounting
and auditing fields and was a Certified Public Accountant.
None of the personnel criticized in the audit
report were ever dismissed; but instead continued
in their positions doing virtually the same jobs they had
Ms. Raynor has
tendered her resignation effective as of June 2, 2006.
During her time
as CFO, Ms. Raynor had prepared several budget amendments
to move funds to areas that were considerably under-budgeted.
Apparently there were several areas that were not budgeted
or funded properly during the period that Interim County
Manager Leonard Myers prepared the budget. Mr. Myers was
reportedly a “budget expert” according to one commissioner.
Eventually some BOC members realized that the landfill budget
had been “plugged”. This one entry resulted in a $250,000
revenue shortfall. During the same budget process, there
was an expected $400,000 SPLOST shortfall that was also
under-budgeted. These problems resulted in the budget cuts
that have been roundly criticized by the effected agencies
so the “contingency fund” could be increased to cover the
the upcoming audit for the 12-31-05 year to show little
improvement over the last one because no financial personnel
changes were made during 2005. Sources have indicated
Ms. Raynor was not being supported in many of the changes
she felt were necessary to make in the office to get things
corrected and operating smoothly. Ms. Raynor
did seem to get a handle on all the late payments that were
being made on county bills and have them up to date. The
recommendations by the audit firm need to be implemented
to correct the financial situation in the office. Those
recommendations were more than just hiring a CFO.
Greg Williams, is also a CPA and has financial experience
according to his resume. He should be qualified to perform
the CFO’s duties and keep the bills paid timely and other
necessary financial obligations. There are under
utilized employees in the BOC office that should be able
to help along with personnel that seem to have an abundant
amount of “free time” to attend to personal business. They
could help pick up the slack left by Ms. Raynor’s resignation.
This would allow considerable savings in payroll expense
for the county.
** To keep the taxpayers of Jasper County, Georgia informed
as to where and how their tax dollars are being spent.
** To keep the taxpayers abreast of local policies and laws
being discussed and enacted.
** We advocate more open government, less government spending,
and lower property taxes.