MO State Auditor finds conflict of interest in West Missouri county

A state audit of a western Missouri country released Tuesday revealed a severe lack of oversight and conflicts of interest. KRPS’s Fred Fletcher-Fierro has more.

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Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway released findings Tuesday from an audit of the Cornland Special Road District, which oversees 12 miles of gravel road outside Butler.

Auditors found that two of the three commissioners were paid for road repair and maintenance work in 2021. They also received payments for road work services while serving on the board, creating an apparent conflict of interest.

Missouri law prohibits elected officials from performing any service for compensation other than compensation for the performance of their duties. Additionally, the board did not prepare and file IRS 1099 forms to report the payments made to these commissioners.

Also, auditors found that the board only held one public meeting in 2021 but did not keep an agenda or meeting minutes in compliance with the Sunshine Law.

One commissioner indicated to auditors that the board met informally on other occasions throughout the year to discuss and vote on district business without providing public notice or keeping meeting minutes. The audit resulted in a rating of “fair.”

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