Worcester Telegram:Audit finds unexpected surplus at Worcester-Webster special ed unit
July 31, 2012 - The following content was originally published by the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
A state audit of the Central Massachusetts Special Education Collaborative turned up a multimillion surplus, failure to transition some employees from Social Security to the state retirement system, a lack of documentation around competitive bids and approximately $1,600 in unearned sick time, the state said today.
The audit comes as the state overhauls regulations of special education collaboratives after the state inspector general's allegations of severe financial misconduct at the Merrimack Special Education Collaborative.
The new regulations should address the problems in the audit, according to state Auditor Suzanne Bump.
Boston Globe: State bond plan saves cities costs
July 26, 2012 - The following content was originally published by the Boston Globe
Salem will be saving an estimated $425,000 in interest costs by making use of a Massachusetts program that allows approved cities and towns to use the state’s bond rating when borrowing money for projects.
The Massachusetts Municipal Finance Oversight Board on July 11 approved Salem’s application to issue $62.02 million in long-term “qualified bonds” through the program to fund two school projects and other capital improvements.
At the same meeting, the board authorized Methuen to issue $2.3 million in qualified bonds under the same program for various equipment purchases, including a fire truck.
The state program is designed for communities and regional school districts that need to borrow money and have a lower bond rating than that of the state. By using the state’s bond rating, they are able to save on interest costs.
Springfield Republican: Holyoke Community College cited in state audit
July 25, 2012 - The following content was originally published by the Springfield Republican
A recent state audit revealed that Holyoke Community College had inadequate controls to protect equipment and property from theft or misuse.
That audit, from July 1, 2010 to September 30, 2011 listed the theft of nine computers with a combined value of more than $18,000 and another five computers, valued at $6,469 could not be found on campus.
The audit determined that HCC’s electronic inventory was out of date and non-compliant with state and college policies. It also determined that the college lacked documentation on disbursement and use of gasoline used by its maintenance and security staff.
William J. Fogarty, HCC vice president for administration and finance, acknowledged the audit and its findings saying “We take very seriously our role as custodian of public assets funded by the taxpayers and our students and the state audit provides an opportunity to improve our performance. There are always things we can do to improve and our controls were not at the level they should have been.”
State Auditor Suzanne M. Bump, who released the findings Wednesday said that the college has responded “positively to all findings.”
Standard Times: State auditor meets with local leaders, highlights reform efforts
July 20, 2012 - The following content was originally published by the New Bedford Standard Times.
State Auditor Suzanne M. Bump said she wants her office to go beyond flagging problems in programs and to target why they happened in the first place.
On Thursday, Bump met with about 30 local leaders, educators and activists, giving an overview of her office and the steps she has taken to improve its function.
Auditor Bump with Jon Mitchell, Mayor of New Bedford
The Office of the State Auditor serves as the state's financial overseer through activities that range from auditing government departments to investigating fraud in public assistance.
"I want to use the auditors office to look at systems within government and not just flaws in programs," said Bump during lunch at the Wamsutta Club, which former Mayor Scott Lang hosted with attorney Margaret "MarDee" Xifaras.
Channel 5: On The Record interview with Auditor Bump