Buncombe County 2009 vehicle use audit

A review of the use of county-owned vehicles by Buncombe County internal auditor Tim Flora issued in April 2009 identified a number of areas where the expenditure of taxpayers’ dollars could be cut.

The audit found that the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Department’s long-standing policy of allowing deputies to drop off their kids at local schools should be stopped because it increased the county’s insurance liability and violated federal tax rules, as well as a state law banning the private use of publicly owned vehicles.

It also found that:

– Some county departments weren’t meeting Internal Revenue Service rules regarding the proper reporting of the fringe benefit of allowing some employees to drive home county-owned vehicles.

– The county spent $224,769 to subsidize the costs of allowing employees to use take-home vehicles, money which should be recouped in some cases.

– About $650 in taxpayers’ money was wasted on buying 3,250 gallons of high-grade fuel for some vehicles when the high-grade fuel wasn’t necessary.

Click here to read the full audit.

Sheriff Van Duncan agreed with the audit’s findings. Click here to read his e-mail exchange with County Manager Wanda Greene.

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