Fauquier hires audit firm to look at fire companies
The Fauquier County Board of Supervisors has agreed to a contract with a Charlottesville-based auditing company to review financial management practices of the county's fire and rescue associations.
The review, which will be done by Robinson, Farmer Cox Associates, comes in the wake of financial improprieties by former volunteers at the Warrenton and Remington Volunteer Fire Companies.
On Wednesday, former Warrenton Volunteer Fire Department contract employee Kelly Leach pleaded guilty in Fauquier County Circuit Court to multiple counts of embezzlement from the station.
According to a Fauquier.com story published Wednesday, the fraud started in January 2010 and lasted three years.
This August, former Remington president William Joseph Stuart pled guilty to theft from a program receiving federal funds and will be sentenced on Nov. 15. Stuart and former Remington fire chief Douglas "Bo" Taylor were charged with fraud and embezzlement earlier this summer.
In all, more than $80,000 was taken from the two companies.
The proposal by the audit company states the review will encompass the last fiscal year and include, among other things, interviews of fire and rescue personnel, reviews of financial documents, accounting systems and bylaws and minutes from meetings to identify "any issues related to spending authority, changes in policies/procedures and approval and plans for large purchases.
The estimated cost of the review will be $35,000 and will be paid for through carryover funds from the budget approved this spring by the supervisors.
Fauquier County has an existing contract with Robinson, Farmer Cox Associates for previously performed audits.
A previous internal audit of the Fauquier County fire stations unearthed the situation in Warrenton, said FRA president Tom Marable.
There are 11 volunteer fire companies in the county, all of which receive county funding.
For the complete story, pick up a copy of next Wednesday's Fauquier Times.
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