A state audit has found thousands of dollars worth of “questionable spending” in the Cass County Sheriff’s office. State Auditor Dave Vaudt focused on a cash account in the Cass County sheriff’s department which was supposed to be used for things like paying-off informants, making undercover drug buys and buying vehicles. Vaudt’s review started at the beginning of 2001 and ran ’til the end of this past February, and he found over 11-thousand dollars in “improper” spending from that account. Some of the questionable payments were registration fees for golf tournaments. The auditor also reports the sheriff’s son used the county’s credit card improperly. Vaudt says “not all the records were there,” so it’s really hard to understand what happened because there was no tracking of what went in and out of the account. Vaudt has recommended that the sheriff’s cash account be deposited in the county’s bank account so the cash isn’t handled or kept in the sheriff’s office. Vaudt says the discrepancies uncovered in this audit are the exception rather than the rule when it comes to local governments in Iowa.Vaudt says most Iowa counties, school districts and cities “do a very good job of record-keeping.” Vaudt has referred his report on the Cass County Sheriff’s Department to the Attorney General. Cass County Sheriff Larry Jones is not seeking reelection. His son, Darrell, is a deputy in the department.
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