Starke County Treasurer’s Books almost Balanced

Linda Belork

The discrepancies in the Treasurer’s office have almost been solved. It was reported at this week’s Starke County Commissioners meeting that the Treasurer’s balance, and bank balance were in sync within pennies. The figures came from the monthly 47TR report given to the commissioners.

“The 47TR form is basically the form that compares our Treasurer’s balance to the bank balance to the Auditor’s balance,” explained Commission President, Dan Bridegroom. “The Auditor’s balance will be somewhat different than the Treasurer’s because of how the funds are received. In the bottom line, that form out of the Treasurer’s Office should balance with our bank. That is where we had the huge discrepancy of almost $900,000 and that’s what led us to where we are today. As of Tuesday of last week, the Auditor, Kay Chaffins, and Casey in the Treasurer’s Office have got that down to somewhere around $.33 and they will find that portion of that also.”

On August 11th of this year, Treasurer Linda Belork was removed from her office and the commissioners took possession of the books to try to discover where thousands of dollars in errors were.

“Once we got to the books, we felt very, very sure that we would find where all of the errors in the counting systems. That’s basically what it was. It was all the counting errors. Things just weren’t calculated properly and they now are. We feel good about where we stand today.”

Even though the discrepancies have been found, the commissioners are not going to allow Mrs. Belork to go back into the office as treasurer.

“We are staying with a Deputy Treasurer at this time,” continued Bridegroom. “I’m sure the Democratic party is wanting to get somebody in there and caucus that person in. We have to rely on Marty Lucas, who is our legal counsel on this, to guide us on when we should do this. I’m sure it all hinges on where we stand with the law suit which has been moved to Jasper County. We’re back on the good track. The bad days, I hope, are behind us.”

The county has one more hurdle to go over, and that’s bonding.

“The bonding company a little worried about us right now. We are in the process of looking for a bonding agent. We do have a couple of candidates, but that’s not where it starts. First, you have to find a bonding company that is willing to bond your county,” said Bridegroom.

It is not known at this time where the discrepancies were that caused the treasurer’s and bank’s books not to balance.