Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Three apply for internal audit gig

Three firms have expressed interest in taking over Knox County's internal auditing program.

Yeah good luck. Like that contract is really gonna go anywhere.

A little catch-up here: Awhile back the audit committee and the county commission started talking about outsourcing the $251,000-a-year operation. Now, I'm not sure who internal auditor Richard Walls ticked off, but it was someone. Cause, really, no one is buying the whole “we're just testing the water and trying to see if we can save money, so we're going to bid out the office.”

Cause that's not happening. Not with the peanuts the county invests in the audit department right now. So, don't expect any changes.

However, to keep the charade going, the county did open up the “request for proposals” process on Oct. 30. Three organizations – Pugh and Company (they're also the county's outside auditors), KPMG (the county's most recent external auditor) and Blackburn, Childers and Steagall submitted proposals.

Walls' operation, which didn't have to turn over anything, also will be considered.

The county still needs to get some more information from the firms, like references and how much it will cost to staff such an operation. The county set a Dec. 7 date to get that, and officials expect to hold interviews Dec. 11.

Each firm will get 45 minutes – 20 minutes for presentations and 25 to answer questions. The meeting will be open to the public although I'm pretty sure no one from the public will attend.

The internal audit department investigates financial transaction and reports directly to the Knox County Commission.

And that's the problem. The commission is always asking the department, which has like four people, to look into stuff. And it's easy; it's not an issue. It's already paid for.

Now, what happens when the commission wants something investigated and a replacement firm comes back with a major bill? Will commissioners be so quick to investigate?

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