Diligent eye sets the record straight

Published 12:01 am Sunday, May 17, 2015

Responsibility for public money is an interesting thing, or more to the point, seeing how responsible public officials are in getting things right is interesting.

How many times have we all seen public leaders seemingly discount the need to get things right when it involved public money?

We’ve heard all the excuses:

  • The new bookkeeping software is difficult to understand.
  • I’m not a bookkeeper; I’m an elected official.
  • It will all work itself out in the end.

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Fortunately, for Adams County taxpayers, County Administrator Joe Murray is not cut from the same cloth.

A consummate numbers guy, Murray couldn’t figure out why his budget numbers always came up short at the end of the year, so he started digging. In the end, he found an error that had gone unnoticed for more than a decade.

The result wasn’t a misappropriation of county funds, but a misdirection of those funds.

While the matter is complicated, what Murray found was that more than $400,000 of annual tax dollars was going being sent to the Natchez-Adams School District when it should have been divided with the county.

In the end, the problem was simply the equivalent of putting money in the left pocket rather than the right, but getting such things corrected is important.

We applaud Murray’s efforts and are pleased he’s watching out for the best interest of taxpayer money.