Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway today issued an audit of the Village of McCord Bend, a 300-person community in southwest Missouri. Village residents petitioned the Auditor's Office for review amid concerns about a lack of transparency in city operations.
"Village trustees are tasked with ensuring taxpayer funds are used appropriately, and that means establishing processes to prevent potential issues and correct problems if they occur," Auditor Galloway said. "My team recommended corrective action, and I am pleased McCord Bend's trustees are already taking steps to better serve residents."
Auditors found that village accounting processes required additional oversight, and they recommended more formalized procedures for handling village contracts and purchases, as trustees failed to secure contracts for some services and did not seek bids for other major purchases. The village does not have any employees, so a village trustee serves as McCord Bend's clerk, often managing financial transactions without sufficient review by other village officials.
Auditors also raised concerns about the informal management of McCord Bend's water system funds. The village lacks procedures to handle late or partial payments, and water deposits are not tracked appropriately. Officials also lacked a formal plan to address upkeep of city streets and failed to track village finances throughout the year to ensure village expenses stayed within budgeted amounts.
The audit also identified a number of violations of Missouri's Sunshine Law. The village board met in closed session without posting appropriate notice or recording votes to enter closed session. Another session was closed for discussion of a topic not allowed by law. Auditors recommended the village adopt a formal policy regarding access to village records and take action to ensure village ordinances are updated and complete.
The Village of McCord Bend is located in Stone County. The complete audit report received an overall performance rating of "fair" and can be found online here.