The City of Burgin has lost their auditor, leaving thousands of dollars in state road aid in limbo.
Craig Butler, a CPA with Kerbaugh, Rodes and Butler of Danville, resigned as the city’s auditor on Tuesday, June 14. According to Burgin City Clerk Michelle Russell, Butler quit because he was receiving too many phone calls about the city’s audit. Burgin has not completed an audit since 2011. A check of the Department of Local Government website shows there is $100,271.95 in state road aid the city has not been able to collect because of the missing audits.
“As of right now, we have no auditor,” Russell said at last week’s meeting of the Burgin City Council. She said Butler would help get his replacement up to speed.
Councilman Sindicat “Sid” Dunn said he called Butler twice because he was getting questions from Burgin citizens. Dunn said the accountant did not resign because of phone calls, but because he had not received the information from the city necessary to complete the audits.
Dunn suggested hiring another firm, which he said had been recommended by Harrodsburg accountant Noel Turner.
The city has also received an ethics notice from the Mercer County Ethics Board that they are investigating a complaint against Mayor George Hensley, who was investigated in 2016 by the ethics board because Hensley’s son, Shane Hensley, works for the city. Burgin has also received notice of two open records violations from the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office this year.
“I’m doing everything illegal after 46 years,” Hensley said.
Shane Hensley’s contract expires July 19, and the city council voted to bid out the job to see if they would receive a lower bid.
The city also learned their insurance could possibly go up over $2,000, mainly because of two vehicles they got from the Department of Defense.
Burgin is currently paying $20,000 for insurance, but they learned last week their premium would go up 10-percent because of the two vehicles, which they received free of charge. One vehicle, an armor-plated Humvee, will be returned after a year, but the other, an American General truck, is theirs to keep.
It was suggested insurance would be cheaper if the vehicles were signed over to the Burgin Fire Department, but Police Chief Casey Rucker said they had to abide by the federal government’s stipulations, or the city could lose both vehicles.
Rucker said the vehicles were needed for inclement weather events, like snow or flooding.
Burgin’s choices for insurance are limited. According to Russell, the Kentucky League of Cities, which insures municipal governments across Kentucky, including Harrodsburg, will not insure Burgin. According to Russell, the League is not interested in providing insurance, citing previous claims against the city. The city hopes to receive another insurance quote by the end of the month.
To learn more, check out this week’s issue of the Harrodsburg Herald.