The move comes after officials fired Roger Underwood, the KCS accounts payable supervisor, for misusing his school-issued card, and a WBIR 10News investigation (RIGHT SMACK HERE) that detailed how the cards were rarely paid on time.
The 8-page plan was written by Bob Thomas, assistant schools superintendent of administrative services, to KCS Superintendent Jim McIntyre. You can find it RIGHT SMACK HERE.
Really, there’s nothing new, and most of the recommendations should have been done years ago.
Bob suggests eliminating the six credit cards (which they’ve already done) and the eight Sam’s cards. He also proposes more training, more checks and balances and moving over to the county’s e-card program.
All these are good suggestions. Unfortunately it took not one financial scandal, but two, to get the ball rolling.
Again, your can find the memo RIGHT SMACK HERE. Check it out. I’m not re-writing it for ya. There’s more details in there.
Of course, no KCS school memo – be it private or public – is complete without either (a) a “woe is me” clause or (b) a suggestion that someone else is to the blame for the problem. Even if it’s a teeny, tiny suggestion.
In this case it’s a little bit of both. Let me direct your attention to the top of Page 6 in which Bob pontificates:
It is important to note that positions in the KCS Finance Department have been reduced over the last several years. This is due to a purposeful effort to keep budget cuts away from the classroom and to try and maximize efficiencies within KCS central administration.Er, yeah. Welcome to the real world.
Business everywhere – including right here in Knox County – are cutting their workforces.
Further, the county administration and its finance team for years have suggested that the school system’s finance department fall under its umbrella, and KCS has steadfastly refused.
My guess is that consolidating the two would create more efficiencies and save money.
It would certainly be more transparent.
Anyhoo, expect the school system to ask for more money to add people to its finance department.