City Council Members talk over audit

Titusville city manager Neil Fratus (center) discusses the findings of the city's 2019 audit with city council during its meeting in the second floor conference room of Townse Square on Tuesday.

Members of the Titusville City Council heard from a long list of recommendations brought forth to the City as a result of its audit conducted for the year 2019 during their meeting Tuesday night in Towne Square.

City Manager Neil Fratus spent a long portion of the meeting listing the auditors’ notable findings and results, most of which he said derived from an apparent misunderstanding of the county’s Munis accounting system and an overall lack of formal documentation for fiscal matters within numerous city departments.

Fratus also noted that the previous council administration did not appear to utilize City Controller Kathy Barnhart to the full extent of her duties, leading to further issues listed in the audit.

Some of the notable findings from the auditors’ report included lack of documentation for budgeted allocations for the city’s sewer, refuse and water funds; the absence of records for one of the city’s bank accounts; concerns with the handling of the payroll process, pension process, cash receipts and credit cards; and potential issues with information technology and data security due to lack of technological upgrades and backups.

“We have a lot of reviewing to do to try to fix these issues,” Fratus said.

A few of the issues listed, such as the proper use of the accounting software, were fixed this year when members of the current administration began their terms, Fratus said.

He added that Barnhart is working to correct some of the other financial issues listed, and council could work to put policies in place to prevent future issues similar to those in the 2019 audit, such as the upgrading and backing up of the IT server.

Deputy Mayor Jon Crouch recommended that rather than accept the report during Tuesday’s meeting, council should invite the auditors back to Titusville to discuss the findings with them during a future meeting, which the council unanimously voted to do.

“It’s pretty sad we’re left to this predicament based on things we have no control over,” Crouch said.

The next meeting of the Titusville city council will be held at 7 p.m. on Oct. 6 in the second floor conference room of Towne Square

Herdle can be reached by email at news@titusvilleherald.com.

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