State Auditor Nicole Galloway today released an audit of the St. Louis City Treasurer's Office which gave the office a rating of "good." Among its findings, the audit said the office needs to improve controls and procedures over bank accounts and investments, as well as procurement, contracting and internal accounting. The Treasurer's Office has committed to implementing the recommendations in the report. The report is part of the ongoing, comprehensive audit of the City of St. Louis.
The Treasurer's Office processes city funds through 49 bank accounts at 10 banks and also maintains various short-term investments. At the end of June 2019, the office held approximately $300 million in bank accounts and $403 million in investments.
The audit found that the office's Treasury Division needs to improve controls and procedures over bank accounts and investments. The Funds Committee, which includes the Treasurer, Mayor, and Comptroller, approves the financial institutions used by city departments. Officials from those city departments then select which bank they want to use and notify the Treasury Division. While the division does competitively procure the banks used for the Parking Division account and the payroll account, the financial institutions used by other offices do not undergo a formal, competitive procurement process.
In addition, Treasury Division staff do not timely monitor or post wire transfers and investment activity or maintain adequate documentation to support investment decisions. Also, they did not prepare timely bank reconciliations.
The audit also found the Treasurer's Office has not established policies and procedures for the selection of vendors for goods and services, and does not always enter into written contracts when appropriate or monitor contracts effectively. In addition, receipting procedures need to be strengthened to provide more assurance that all monies received are recorded on the accounting records and deposited, and employee leave records need to be submitted to the Comptroller's Office for reconciliation to the city's centralized leave records.
In 2018, Auditor Galloway accepted the request by the Board of Aldermen to complete a comprehensive, independent audit of the City of St. Louis. That request came after a group of St. Louis residents initiated a petition drive to require an audit of the city. For more information on the ongoing audit of the city, visit auditor.mo.gov/STLAudit.
The complete audit of the City of St. Louis Treasurer's Office can be found here.