Linden Treasurer in battle with Town Council to follow accounting procedures

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Treasurer of the Linden Town Council, Audrey Nelson on Monday admitted before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) that the leaders of the municipality are against following the procedures when it comes to spending monies received from Central Government.

“Linden Municipality, we have issues following the procedures,” the Treasurer expressed, causing PAC Members to roar in laughter.

She made the remark before responding to a question posed by Member of Parliament (MP), Juan Edghill who queried why only $3M of a $16M subvention was spent.

“Remember, the subvention programme that is being given, we had to stay within the ambits of the programme and spend the money within the ambits of the programme. They wanted us to go outside of the programme,” the Treasurer explained.

Nelson told the PAC, however, that she held her grounds on the proper spending of the monies and because of that, only $3M was expended.

“So we only get to buy equipment under the programme we had. They wanted to spend the money without the work programme and approval from the Ministry,” she explained.

Nelson noted, however, that the balance [monies unspent] remain in a special account in the bank.

The Treasurer explained that she advised the Linden Town Council that they can apply for a change in the work programme in order to spend the money, but no move was made to do this.

“Most of the time, they just talk about it,” she stated.

Nelson explained that it is not necessarily a case of the councillors blatantly flouting the law.

“Although we try to tell them that this is the process, they still want to go outside of it. Because, remember, they are from other organizations and so they tell themselves that ‘we can do it the same way we do it outside’. But with the programme from the Ministry (of Communities) I told them that we had to stay within the ambits of the programme,” she informed the PAC.

PAC Chairman Irfaan Ali was impressed by the Linden Treasurer’s frankness and urged that all other accounting officers stay headstrong when accounting for public monies.

“Let me thank this Treasurer for your level of openness and honesty before the PAC.

Ali maintained that rules, procedures and the laws must be followed, especially when dealing with public monies.

PAC Chairman Irfaan Ali was impressed by the Linden Treasurer’s frankness and urged that all other accounting officers stay headstrong when accounting for public monies.

“Let me thank this treasurer for your level of openness and honesty before the PAC.

Ali maintained that rules, procedures and the laws must be followed, especially when dealing with public monies.

 

 

 

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