More than $4 Million in stolen public money in Tennessee remains uncollected

More than $4 Million in stolen public money in Tennessee remains uncollected

Theft and misuse of public money continue to be a concern as outlined in two reports released today by the Tennessee Comptroller’s office.

The 2015 Report of Cash Shortages updates the status of money stolen and missing from Tennessee’s 95 county governments as of June 30, 2015. The report documents money stolen during the 2015 fiscal year, as well as previous fiscal years.

The state’s 95 counties began the last fiscal year with $1,032,456 in cash shortages that had not been recovered. During the fiscal year, $1,069,621 worth of new shortages were detected. Counties were able to recover $1,269,967 through restitution payments, insurance claims or other means. That left a net unrecovered shortage of $832,110 at the end of the fiscal year.

The Comptroller’s office also released its second report detailing cash shortages and other thefts for Tennessee municipalities, internal school funds, utility districts, housing authorities, nonprofits, and other governmental entities. These shortages were reported in fiscal year 2014 and earlier.

Fiscal year 2014 began with a cash shortage of $1,563,137. During the year, $2,546,576 in new shortages were detected. A total of $671,796 was recovered during the fiscal year, leaving an unrecovered shortage of $3,437,917 at fiscal year end.

“The theft of public money should be a concern to all of us,” Comptroller Justin P. Wilson said. “Tennesseans should demand their leaders and public officials take steps to prevent fraud, waste and abuse. Comptroller audits and investigations include recommendations to safeguard public assets. Following these recommendations will help make government work better.”

OF INTEREST — Property taxes going up in two West Tennessee counties

Both reports provide explanations of how the shortages were discovered, methods used to steal the money, and legal actions taken against those responsible.

To view the 2015 Report of Cash Shortages online, click here.
To view the 2014 Municipalities and Other Organizations Report of Cash Shortages online, click here.

Story courtesy of the Tennessee Comptroller’s Office

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