Audit released for Harlan Co. Sheriff’s Office

Published 2:32 pm Friday, March 1, 2019

State Auditor Mike Harmon recently released the audit of the sheriff’s settlement. According to the auditor, the 2017 taxes for Harlan County Sheriff Leslie “Smitty” Smith show no instances of noncompliance or matters involving internal control over financial reporting and its operation that were considered to be material weaknesses.

According to the press release, the sheriff’s financial statement met all requirements and guidelines for the period of April 18, 2017 through April 16, 2018, in conformity with the regulatory basis of accounting.

“In our opinion, the financial statement referred to above presents fairly, in all material respects, the taxes charged, credited and paid for the period of April 18, 2017 through April 16, 2018 of the Harlan County Sheriff, in accordance with the basis of accounting practices prescribed or permitted by the Commonwealth of Kentucky…,” Harmon said in a letter to the state.

In regards to the notes on the financial statement, the Harlan County Sheriff earned $176 as interest income on the 2017 taxes. The sheriff also collected $60,697 of 10 percent add-on fees allowed by Kentucky statute. This amount was used to operate the sheriff’s office.

The sheriff sent a written report to the Kentucky State Treasury and submitted $4,635 to the Kentucky State Treasurer in accordance with KRS 393.110, according to the financial statement.

In compliance with the law, the auditor issues two sheriff’s reports each year: one reporting on the audit of the sheriff’s tax account, and the other reporting on the audit of the fee account used to operate the office.

Auditing standards require the auditor’s letter to communicate whether the sheriff’s settlement presents fairly the taxes charged, credited and paid in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.

The press release states that the sheriff’s responsibilities include collecting property taxes, providing law enforcement and performing services for the county fiscal court and courts of justice. The sheriff’s office is funded through statutory commissions and fees collected in conjunction with these duties.