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State finds fault with Crown Point clerk

Audit critical

An audit by the state comptroller’s office has found Crown Point town clerk Linda Woods did not collect fees and make bank deposits in a timely fashion. The audit also criticized the town board for not monitoring Woods’ activities.

An audit by the state comptroller’s office has found Crown Point town clerk Linda Woods did not collect fees and make bank deposits in a timely fashion. The audit also criticized the town board for not monitoring Woods’ activities.

— Woods said she accepted partial payments to help campers.

“Most of them (campers) are on fixed incomes, so I accepted what they could pay at the time,” Woods said. “I thought I was helping out.”

Since the release of the audit the town board has changed responsibility for collection of campsite fees. Those payments are now made to the supervisor’s clerk.

The audit also found Woods did not properly record the receipts for tax collections and did not deposit tax collections in a timely fashion.

“This is a small office; I’m just one person,” Woods said. “At tax time it gets crazy in here. It’s very difficult to keep up. I did my best. I’ll continue to do my best.”

Woods was also criticized for her record keeping and failing to deposit fees from licenses, dog licenses, campsite fees and other money in a timely fashion.

“The clerk’s failure to ensure that taxes, fees and rents are recorded and deposited accurately and timely may result in errors and irregularities occurring and not being detected and corrected in a timely manner,” according to the audit.

Woods said all the findings relate to “procedures.”

This is not the first time Woods has been criticized by state officials.

“The clerk told us that, despite having held her position for approximately 25 years, she was not aware of the legal requirements for remitting the tax collections in a timely manner,” the audit reads. “The clerk has been in office for approximately 25 years. Previous audit reports that our office issued in 2000 and in 1993 contained findings similar to those addressed in this report about the same clerk. The board’s failure to correct the deficiencies in our prior two audit reports resulted in continuing problems for properly accounting for town moneys.”

Woods said that after each audit she has made changes in her office and done her best to follow the state recommendations. She’ll do so again.

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