The diligent expenditure of your tax funds.
A report from the New Jersey Office of the State Comptroller shows that Mercer County spent nearly $4.5 million in fines and interest for late tax files and payments between 2018 and 2021.
The investigation claims that the Democratically governed county’s Finance Department routinely underpaid federal and state payroll tax obligations.
The longtime County Executive of the capital county, Brian Hughes, is being challenged by a member of his own party, Assemblyman Dan Benson.
The Investigation Found No Evidence of Supervision.
The OSC determined that the Mercer County finance department, headed by the county’s chief financial officer, lacked fundamental internal financial controls such as an organisational chart, documented regulations, and a system of checks and balances to safeguard the integrity of the county’s financial system.
Shirley Turner, a Democrat from Mercer, was surprised and frightened after hearing the news.
For how long did we have to wait to find out that the county hasn’t been paying its payroll taxes? It’s very disturbing,” she exclaimed.
Senator Wants to Know “Who Dropped the Ball.”
Specifically, I want to know where the safeguards need to be set up. There is the county administration, and we also know that there is a Board of County Commissioners. When did they disappear for three years?
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Turner said that every government agency annually hires auditors to check their books, so it’s crucial to find out who screwed up here.
I find it really discouraging that this has persisted for three years and cost us so much money.
New Jersey’s Former Labour Commissioner Reacts With Dismay
The former state labour commissioner, Republican Assemblyman Hal Wirths of Sussex County, New Jersey, expressed disbelief at the news.
People should be outraged that their government made so many mistakes, he said.
He added that he found it difficult to believe the issue has persisted for 13 consecutive quarters.
This is completely unacceptable, and in the private sector, the company responsible would be shut down immediately, he said.
The Cfo Lacked the Proper Qualifications and Had to Be Replaced.
The State Comptroller’s Office found that the CFO of Mercer County had not obtained the necessary certifications to do his job, and that he had not made any effort to do so throughout his tenure there.
Julie Willmot, a representative for the country, commented on the news article by releasing a statement in which she confirmed that Chief Financial Officer David Miller had been terminated.
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According to Willmot, the County conducted an exhaustive investigation into the matters detailed in the report with the help of outside counsel. The matter has been forwarded to the relevant law enforcement agencies as a result of these findings.
Administration and taxpayers were let down by Mr. Miller. We are doing our best to learn from this experience and taking steps to avoid a repeat.”
“Although the OSC report admonishes the Administration for poor oversight of Mr. Miller and the department he managed, the report, finding nothing to the contrary, does not dispute that the Administration and the County are themselves victims of Mr. Miller’s failure to maintain the proper credentials and licences for his job.”