City officials failed to file required audits in past two years
RALEIGH – State Treasurer Dale R. Folwell, CPA, today asked State Auditor Beth Wood to conduct a thorough audit of Goldsboro’s financial books, fearing its finances may be in disarray and therefore vulnerable to mismanagement or misappropriation.
Folwell, who chairs the Local Government Commission (LGC), which is made up of the Treasurer of the State Department (DST), urged Wood to lead the audit of the Wayne County town of nearly 34,000. Goldsboro is on the LGC Unit Support List, where local government units with a range of impairments are placed for heightened surveillance. It has not submitted a required annual audit in the past two years.
“It is disturbing that the 30th largest city in the state, the county seat and the seat of Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, has not been able to pull itself together to perform a basic but critical surveillance function. Audits are needed to assess financial well-being, to ensure that bills are paid and money is not missing, ”Treasurer Folwell said after LGC staff attended a city council meeting of Goldsboro Monday night to address those concerns.
Not only did Goldsboro not submit audits for 2020 and 2021, its 2019 audit contained multiple accounting adjustments to fixed assets and notes receivable. While it is common for some adjustments to be made as a result of an audit, significant adjustments could signal major weaknesses in day-to-day budget management.
“We greatly appreciate the efforts of CFO Catherine Gwynn to resolve these issues. However, the longer the audits, the more likely there are internal financial control issues. If there are internal control issues, the potential for waste, fraud and abuse increases, ”said Treasurer Folwell.
“The hard-working taxpayers in Goldsboro deserve to know that their elected and appointed representatives hold the highest standards as stewards of public funds. That confidence is lacking at this point, so I ask State Auditor Beth Wood to investigate the city’s books and financial statements. We are ready, willing and able to assist its staff, city administration and elected officials in this process, and to ensure that all records are properly kept for review, ”said Treasurer Folwell.