Audit: District overpaid former teacher

YOUNGSTOWN — A state audit has found the city school district paid a teacher $4,219 after she resigned and demands the misspent money be restored.

The routine audit of Youngstown City Schools’ 2018 finances found the district continued to pay the teacher $1,543 over the course of four pay periods after her Sept. 28, 2017, resignation.

The payments on Oct. 27, Nov. 10 and 24 and Dec. 8, 2017, totaled a gross overpayment of $6,172 and the net overpayment of the more than $4,200, according to Ohio Auditor Keith Faber’s office.

It’s the second time an audit uncovered an overpayment to a former employee. It was discovered in the district’s 2017 audit that a different teacher was paid $944 after the person’s resignation, according to the office.

“I cannot overstate the importance of proper internal controls,” Faber said. “It is critical that the district get its accounting practices in order so taxpayers do not end up paying for any more mistakes.”

The latest overpayment was found in the audit of district finances spanning July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018.

Denise Dick, the district’s director of communications and public relations, said corrective actions have been put into place to avoid similar instances in the future.

“We have improved communication between our HR (human resources) and our treasurer’s office. Those two offices work more closely now and personnel from each checks the names of retirees and those (who) have resigned to ensure those offices have the same information and same lists,” Dick wrote in an email. “That checking will be done before each pay period so that it doesn’t happen again.”

The teacher will be required to repay the money.