Audit raises questions for Jackson Co. Sheriff's Office

By: Katie Roach Email
By: Katie Roach Email

MCKEE, Ky (WYMT) - An audit of the Jackson County Sheriff's Office found many problems, both financial and in the way the office is managed.

The fee account for 2011 has a deficit totaling almost $113,000.

The audit also found that the department owes the fiscal court around $278,000 from the past two years.

For months, Jackson County Judge Executive William O. Smith has been asking Sheriff Denny Peyman for reimbursement for the money the fiscal court gave him for payroll.

"It's in black and white now, and it's not what we are saying, but what the auditor is saying," said Smith. "We have been directed by the auditors to collect the fees that are owed the fiscal court because we have fiscal responsibilities that we have to meet, and we can't meet them if we don't have the funds to do so."

But, Sheriff Peyman says he is currently paying that debt back.

"The money has been accounted for. There is no missing money like everybody thought. The $220,000 plus has been payed back for the $278,000 that I owed in overages," said Peyman.

Currently, the fiscal court court is fee pooling the sheriff's office due to the debt. The county treasurer says the sheriff is turning money over to the fiscal court, but it is not for the debt.

"Every bit of money that has come in through the fee account, I've paid that. I've paid all that money to them, yet they are not paying my bills. They are not paying bills for the sheriff's office," said Peyman.

The audit also says the sheriff did not adequately monitor fuel purchases and exceeded the salary limits set by the fiscal court. Sheriff Peyman says he was giving gas to constables to help patrol, but he says that has stopped.

The audit also found more than $500 not used for officials business. The money was said to be used for jury meals, but there was no jury meeting that day. Sheriff Peyman says he will pay that money back.

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