State au­dit ques­tions CCPS spend­ing

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - By JES­SICA IANNETTA jian­netta@ce­cil­

ELKTON — Ce­cil County Pub­lic Schools over­paid its bus con­trac­tors by nearly $8 mil­lion and en­tered into a $14.1 mil­lion so­lar power con­tract with­out us­ing a com­pet­i­tive bid process or de­ter­min­ing whether it was getting the best rate, ac­cord­ing to a state au­dit of the school sys­tem re­leased late last month.

The au­dit, which was con­ducted by the Mary­land Of­fice of Leg­isla­tive Au­dits, is typ­i­cally con­ducted ev­ery six years to eval­u­ate the fi­nan­cial man­age­ment prac­tices of the school sys­tem, and in­volves the au­di­tors work­ing on site for about eight months. This au­dit is in ad­di­tion to an in­de­pen­dent au­dit con­ducted an­nu­ally by a cer­ti­fied pub­lic ac­coun­tant firm.

The state’s au­dit re­port, dated July 26, con­tains 14 sets of rec­om­men­da­tions for CCPS to im­prove its fi­nan­cial man­age­ment prac­tices, the ma­jor­ity of which the school sys­tem agreed with. Be­yond the school sys­tem’s bus con­tracts and so­lar power pur­chase agree­ment, two find­ings CCPS dis­putes, the re­port also found that CCPS needs to im­prove in­ter­nal con­trols and ac­count­abil­ity in a num­ber of ar­eas and that “sig­nif­i­cant risks” ex­ist within the sys­tem’s com­puter net­work.

De­spite th­ese is­sues, the au­dit found no prob­lems in the ar­eas of fed­eral grants,

See AU­DIT Page A7


Gov. Larry Ho­gan an­nounces an up­com­ing re­quest for pro­pos­als to deal with a buildup of sed­i­ment be­hind the Conowingo Dam dur­ing a press con­fer­ence in Dar­ling­ton on Tues­day, as Mary­land Sec­re­tary of Nat­u­ral Re­sources Mark Bel­ton (cen­ter) and Sec­re­tary of the En­vi­ron­ment Ben Grum­bles look on.


A re­cent state au­dit found that CCPS may have over­paid its bus con­trac­tors by nearly $8 mil­lion over 12 years.

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