Galloway works to expedite audit of Callaway County Collector's Office

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - UPDATE 5:35 p.m.: The Callaway County Commission has asked Galloway's office to audit the collector's office.

The audit is necessary for the county to re-open the office, which closed on March 15.

The proclamation sent from the commission on Monday asks for a "rapid response audit of the Callaway County Collector's office," and that the county would pay for the audit.

The auditor's website describes its rapid response team as one that investigates in cases of possible violations of state and federal law or mismanagement of public resources.

State law requires the auditor's office to review some finances in the county collector's office when a new collector takes over. Callaway County commissioner Randall Kleindienst said he hoped the audit would speed up the process of re-opening the office, and worried about the inconvenience it had on people.

"We can't afford for that office to be closed to the public for the citizens of Callaway County," Kleindienst told ABC 17 News.

The county does yearly audits from outside agencies, Kleindienst said, but no audit caught the activity flagged by Central Bank. Kleindienst said state law keeps some accounts, like the one in question, are not subject to audit.

ORIGINAL: Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway announced on Monday that her office has been in contact with officials in Callaway County and is working to expedite an audit of the Callaway County Collector's Office. 

"County officials have been proactive in working with our office, and we stand ready to offer our expertise in investigating suspicious or improper activity," Galloway said. "I am committed to protecting taxpayers, fighting corruption and holding public officials accountable for their actions."

Missouri law requires an audit to be done when a vacancy occurs in a county collector office, but stipulates that the audit begins after a new collector takes office. 

Galloway said in this circumstance, the governor would be required to appoint a new collector. However, due to the troubling allegations, Galloway has requested the county take action to allow for work to begin more quickly and get answers from Callaway County taxpayers. 

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