Report No. 2011-60
Findings in the audit of the Department of Public Safety, Missouri State Water Patrol
On January 1, 2011, the Missouri State Water Patrol (MSWP) was eliminated, and its powers and duties were transferred to the Water Patrol Division, within the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP). This audit primarily focuses upon the 30 months preceding the transfer.
The MSWP failed to transfer boater education fees of over $3,000 to the General Revenue Fund, and the money was missing. The audit staff discovered discrepancies between recorded cash receipts and deposit records and requested the MSHP investigate the matter further. In April 2011, a former MSWP clerk was charged with felony stealing. Weaknesses in the MSWP internal controls allowed this theft to go undetected.
Excess Boat Inventory
Twenty-eight boats worth a total of $250,000 remain unused in a warehouse with no clear plans for their future use or disposal. These boats should have been disposed of as surplus property, but we were told a miscommunication prevented them from being prepared/scheduled for surplus .
Fiscal Impact of Merger
Although press releases issued by the Department of Public Safety and the Governor's office indicated the transfer would save the state approximately $3 million, it appears it will actually cost the state an extra $900,000 each year. Although the state will save some money from cutting support staff, not filling vacancies, and terminating a lease, the merger will cost the state nearly $1.8 million more in increased retirement and health care costs each year. Also, the savings estimates claimed the state would save $2.4 million by reassigning water patrol officers, but the state will still have to pay these officers; it will just pay the $2.4 million out of some other state funds.
In the areas audited, the overall performance of this entity was Fair.*
American Recovery and Reinvestment Act 2009 (Federal Stimulus)
The Department of Public Safety, Missouri State Water Patrol did not receive any federal stimulus monies during the audited time period.
*The rating(s) cover only audited areas and do not reflect an opinion on the overall operation of the entity. Within that context, the rating scale indicates the following:
The audit results indicate this entity is very well managed. The report contains no findings. In addition, if applicable, prior recommendations have been implemented.
The audit results indicate this entity is well managed. The report contains few findings, and the entity has indicated most or all recommendations have already been, or will be, implemented. In addition, if applicable, many of the prior recommendations have been implemented.
The audit results indicate this entity needs to improve operations in several areas. The report contains several findings, or one or more findings that require management's immediate attention, and/or the entity has indicated several recommendations will not be implemented. In addition, if applicable, several prior recommendations have not been implemented.
The audit results indicate this entity needs to significantly improve operations. The report contains numerous findings that require management's immediate attention, and/or the entity has indicated most recommendations will not be implemented. In addition, if applicable, most prior recommendations have not been implemented.