• Audit shows money was significantly mishandled in McNairy County

    By: Leah Jordan


    MCNAIRY CO., Tenn. - The Tennessee Comptroller’s Office completed its annual financial report of McNairy County Government on Wednesday. 

    In the state’s words: “There is much room for improvement.”

    The audit reveals details about the way McNairy County government offices handle money. More than 200 pages were included in the financial report. 

    Auditors found problems in the offices of the county mayor, sheriff, highway commissioner, and director of schools. The audit stated that many of the issues aren’t new.  

    The Tennessee Comptroller offered, in part, the following statement:

    “What is most concerning to me is the number of repeat problems noted in this report. County leaders must commit to resolving these findings, so they won’t occur again,” Justin P. Wilson said.

    Download the FOX13 Memphis app to receive alerts from breaking news in your neighborhood.


    Trending stories:

    The report details 11 findings of noncompliance or significant deficiency. Eight of those findings were also reported in last year’s audit. 

    The audit reported that the Office of the County Mayor had deficiencies in their budget. It said some salaries exceeded the approved amount by anywhere from $200 to more than $19,000.  

    In the mayor and sheriff’s office, auditors found accrued vacation leave went over the minimum balance. Three employees in the sheriff’s office got more leave than the policy allows. 

    Additionally, the sheriff’s office had accounting deficiencies. Auditors discovered there were no accounting records for transactions of the commissary, among other money-related problems. 

    The report states that the Office of Highway Commissioner overspent their maintenance budget by more than $232,000. 

    The County Road Superintendent Harvey N. Smith spoke to FOX13 Investigator Leah Jordan and said, going forward, there is a plan to approve budgets quarterly rather than annually. 

    He said he expects that will fix the issues in the future. He also stated that while the audit shows they may have been over budget in maintenance costs, they were able to offset that by using funding for other line-items. 

    Finally, the Director of School’s Office exceeded salary appropriations in 28 instances. The office also had expenditures that exceeded the allotted budget by more than $331,000.

    All department heads signed corrective action agreements with the state. 

    To view the entire audit, visit here.

    FOX13 reached out to all four offices for written statements. The mayor’s office provided FOX13 with a signed corrective action pledge. 

    The Office of Highway Commissioner called FOX13 to give an explanation, as stated above. The other two offices have not responded with comment. 

    Next Up: