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Boston — State Auditor Suzanne Bump today released an audit of the Berkshire Community Action Council (BCAC).
The audit, which covered the period of October 1, 2010 through April 30, 2013, found the BCAC charged the state for a $24,533 unallowable severance package paid to its former Executive Director. The severance package was unallowable because BCAC lacked a formal policy for severance compensation and did not include a provision for such payments in the former employee’s contract.
Auditor Bump, in her report, recommended that the state recover the unallowable expense.
In addition, the former BCAC management team did not follow state procurement policies when leasing 10 used vehicles for its transportation programs. As a result, the agency may not have gotten the best price for the leases at a time when the BCAC transportation program was running at a deficit.
The audit also recognizes BCAC has undergone a leadership change and has initiated a cost-reduction program that included discontinuing programs and a reduction in staffing levels, resulting in more than $400,000 in cost savings. The authority has responded positively to all audit findings and has indicated it is taking corrective action measures.
Berkshire Community Action Council is a Pittsfield-based non-profit organization which provides services for low-income individuals and the elderly and serves the 32 cities and towns and Berkshire County. BCAC also provides transportation services as a subcontractor for the Berkshire Regional Transit Authority.
The Office of the State Auditor conducts technical and performance audits of state government’s programs, departments, agencies, authorities, contracts, and vendors. With its reports, the OSA issues recommendations to improve accountability, efficiency, and transparency.
The Berkshire Community Action Council audit is available here.