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Sarasota News Leader November 2, 2012 "Understand that this isn't aimed at you, Mr. Reid," Commission Chairwoman Christine Robinson told him. "You can be assured I'm asking the clerk's office to do independent audits on items I have observed that don't make sense or feel wrong," Reid replied. "I address anything that seems wrong or out of place." PAST PROBLEMS "Historically, going back a couple of years," Patterson said, "some of the issues that turned out to be major issues were actually identified in some of these audits." Patterson pointed out that a couple of years before employee misuse of "P-cards" — county-issued credit cards — became public knowledge, Rushing and her staff had indicat- ed a problem with the cards. "I remember speaking to the administrator about that," Patterson added, referring to County Administrator Jim Ley, who resigned in May 2011 in the wake of the Procure- Page 19 In a July 16 memo to the County Commission, Reid reported on a number of steps being tak- en in the Procurement Department to improve practices, including the implementation of a revised P-card manual and training of "Ac- count Coordinators and cardholders." Staff was being trained, he added, to use new reporting tools and resources "to conduct au- dit reports such as a monthly spend analysis to monitor card usage and flag unusual trans- actions." At that point, Reid wrote in the memo, 98 percent of the card users had completed the training. RECENT REPORTS Most of the items that have been found to date have been issues of minor changes of policy. There hasn't been a major finding. County Administrator Randall Reid ment Department scandal. "He said, well, he was reducing the number [of P-cards available to employees] and addressing that." However, Patterson said, "That's not the same as a formal answer [such as], 'We're really looking at this because it's a potential prob- lem,' and that was a big … avenue where mis- uses could occur." During the Oct. 23 meeting, Reid said some of the more recent problems flagged by audit involved work done "in a sloppy manner." For example, he said, four of 54 documents that required two sig- natures had just one. Robinson said she would like to see mem- os indicating not only progress taken on spe- cific matters but also a final memo indicating a problem had been resolved. Rushing explained to the commissioners that after her staff gathers all the information for an audit, the findings are "discussed with the responsible folks and we are seeking agree- ment on the comments being made or a rec- ognition that we misunderstood something, which could happen from time to time."

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