By Wayne Allen
When the Scioto County Financial Planning and Supervision Commission met on Thursday to formally request the county be taken out of fiscal emergency, members also accepted an engagement letter from the auditor of state’s office. Detailed in the engagement letter is what it would take for the state auditor to complete the termination analysis, that will come at a price tag of $24,000.
The analysis is one of the remaining steps for the county to be released from a state financial status.
Sharon Hanrahan, commission chairwoman, said the commission approved previous engagement letters.
“Previous engagement letters were for what Chris (McCoy, with the auditor of state’s office) is doing now and what he’s done in the past. This is an engagement letter solely for the purpose of completing the termination analysis,” Hanrahan said. “The services (of a termination analysis) include a team from the auditor of states office coming in and determining if the county is in the process of good faith implementation of addressing those comments on the report of accounting methods (released in 2013). They will look to make sure the county has corrected, eliminated of have not engaged in any new conditions of fiscal emergency.”
She said the team will also check to make sure the county has met the objectives of the financial plan and that a five-year financial forecast has been prepared. The forecast was approved by the commission on Thursday.
“Basically this is what they will do to formally say ‘you’re done, you’ve met the requirements of the (Ohio) revised code,” Hanrahan said. “The cost of this engagement is not anticipated to exceed $24,000 that will be payed for by an appropriation made by the Ohio General Assembly. This (termination analysis) comes at no cost to the county.”
She said the estimated time for the termination analysis is based on the anticipated cooperation from the county and the assumption the county will provide suitable support for the functions. When asked about an estimate on when the analysis would be completed Hanrahan said, “I tell people based on this time of year, because of the other work that local government services does. I give them six months, I would say towards June or July.”
Wayne Allen can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 228 or on Twitter @WayneallenPDT.