Thursday, December 18, 2014

Controller Finds Payroll Problems At City Commissioners Office

Here's the press release:

Controller Finds Payroll Problems At City Commissioners Office

Here's the press release:

Butkovitz Cites Problems with Election Payroll
in Audit of City Commissioners
Among Findings: Election Workers Paid Twice

PHILADELPHIA – City Controller Alan Butkovitz today released an FY07-06 audit of the City Commissioners Office that found some election workers were paid twice through the City’s election payroll.

One election worker received two payments for performing the same function at the same time for two voting divisions located in the same facility, and other workers were paid for two different positions simultaneously for the same location.

“Election workers should not be paid twice for performing two different jobs at the same location at the same time,” said Butkovitz. “This hinders the independence and focus required of each job position that is needed at polling places.”

One worker was paid as both a Majority and a Minority Inspector at the same location during a general election. Another worker was paid as a Judge of Elections and then was paid, with petty cash, as a Minority Inspector even though the individual was crossed off a sign-in sheet as not working the Minority Inspector position.

According to Butkovitz, “if election officers’ payments are not properly made through the payroll register, City Commissioners officials make the disbursements through petty cash.”

“A worker even went as far as depositing their election payroll check and then submitting a request stating they lost their check,” said Butkovitz. “This individual later received a duplicate payment from the petty cash account.”

“Petty cash should not be used as a secondary spending account to pay someone just because they claim they are owed money. There needs to be checks and balances to insure that workers are not being paid twice,” said Butkovitz.

The City Commissioners Office uses a separate election payroll account and check register to pay various election officers for work done during the two elections held each year. These payments range from $75 to $120 per election. In addition, election payments are also made through the Commissioners petty cash account. Of the $35,000 in petty cash expenditures during fiscal 2006, approximately $7,000, or 20 percent, was for payments to election workers.

Along with discrepancies with paying election workers, it was found that a majority and minority inspector, in two separate elections, which are elected positions, was paid even though she was under the age of 18 during the time she worked an election. This violates Pennsylvania Election Law.

To review this audit as well as other reports and reviews issued by the Controller’s Office, please visit www.philadelphiacontroller.org
 

About this blog
Chris Brennan, a native Philadelphian and graduate of Temple University, joined the Daily News in 1999. He has written about SEPTA, the Philadelphia School District, the legalization of casino gambling, state government, the mayor, the governor, City Council and political campaigns. E-mail tips to brennac@phillynews.com
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Jenny DeHuff is a 2005 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where she cut her teeth in journalism. A South Philly transplant from New England, she joined the Daily News City Hall Bureau in 2013. For the past several years, she has worked as an investigative reporter exposing corruption in suburban politics, covering sometimes ghastly criminal court cases and following the people’s money and how its spent. In addition to being a dogged news hound, she enjoys reading and writing about travel, animals, Irish whiskey and aviation. E-mail tips to dehuffj@phillynews.com
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