Times Standard (Eureka)
Who will be grading the county’s bookkeeping?
Supervisors appoint community members to audit advisory committee
The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors selected three community members to serve on the newly formed eight-person audit advisory committee on Tuesday.
The committee will work with the Humboldt County Auditor-Controller’s Office to objectively assess the county’s financial reporting process.
The call for an audit committee came after months of back-andforth talk between supervisors, the county administrative office and the auditor-controller’s office regarding delays in payments, transfers, and reconciliations of accounts.
Auditor-Controller Karen Paz Dominguez, Administrative Officer Amy Nilsen and TreasurerTax Collector John Bartholomew will serve on the committee as non-voting members.
Representing the board, chair 4th District Supervisor Virginia Bass and vicechair 3rd District Supervisor Mike Wilson will join two qualified citizens and a school/special district representative.
The board selected Corey Weber, assistant superintendent of business services at the Humboldt County Office of Education, to serve as the committee’s school representative. Former interim auditor-controller Cheryl Dillingham and county employee Mychal Evenson were selected to serve as community representatives.
Weber and Fortuna Union High School District superintendent Glen Senestraro were both selected as potential school district representatives but Senestraro recommended Weber serve on the committee.
“Corey would be a very good choice for you guys,” Senestraro said. “He represents all districts in Humboldt County where I work with the Fortuna Union High School District as well as our Eel River Valley superintendents and districts. He would have more of a depth of knowledge on what goes in school districts for Humboldt County.”
Before voting, 1st District Supervisor Rex Bohn thanked Senestraro for “stepping up and graciously recognizing Corey’s talents” and knowledge of district operations throughout the county. Second District Supervisor Michelle Bushnell thanked Senestraro as well.
Before hearing from potential community representatives, the board voted 5-0 to appoint Weber to the audit committee.
Speaking to the board, Mychal Evenson — who had expressed his enthusiastic support for an audit committee during the board’s March 16 meeting — said he had worked for the county for four years, first in the sheriff’s office and later in the auditorcontroller’s office.
“I’ve worked under both Paz Dominguez and former interim auditor Cheryl Dillingham,” Evenson said. “… Really what I bring in with me is an innovation mindset, something around new processes and procedures to develop stronger internal controls without sacrificing the efficiency of operations.”
In addition to having served as interim auditorcontroller, Dillingham said she has worked in various county departments for more than 30 years.
“I feel like my experience working in the auditor’s office and other county departments provide me with good background and knowledge to help with the stewardship of public resources and development of plans to address fiscal oversight in the county,” she said. “I appreciate this opportunity to give back to the county for my 30 years of service working there and to support the auditor’s office and county departments.”
The third person up for consideration John Frahm, North Coast director of the United Food & Commercial Workers, was not in attendance.
Bohn made a motion to appoint Dillingham and Evenson to the audit committee. Third District Supervisor Mike Wilson seconded. The motion passed 5-0. Nilsen said the board will meet four times a year and said the first meeting “will hopefully be around the upcoming audit for fiscal year 2019/2020.”