The Polygraph News has learned that a State Comptroller’s audit has uncovered several misappropriations concerning the former Claiborne County High School principal.
FINDING 1: The former Claiborne High School principal improperly used school maintenance employees for private purposes. This included trips to Middlesboro, Kentucky and other use of school employees while they were clocked in.
FINDING 2: The former principal purchased merchandise from a vendor using the school department’s sales tax exemption. The former principal purchased merchandise from a vendor using the school department’s sales tax exemption allowing him to avoid paying sales tax. Tennessee Code Annotated, Section 67-6- 322(c), limits the use of sales tax exemptions to schools, school departments, or other eligible institutions granted the exemption.
The principal claimed he made one personal purchase using the school department’s sales tax exemption; however, upon review of invoices and vendor records, the state confirmed the principal made other purchases without paying sales tax, and the principal was not reimbursed by the school department or school for these purchases.
FINDING 3: The former principal used questionable practices when renting out the school’s multi-purpose room to outside groups. according to the principal and maintenance employees, other events were held where rental payments were made in cash or by check directly to maintenance employees. We could not determine why certain rental payments were receipted with the school and others were not. The principal and maintenance employees claimed outside groups initially wrote checks to each maintenance employee that worked an event. This payment served as the room rental and payment to maintenance employees for their services. The principal claimed he began taking cash for most payments when a check to one of the maintenance employees was returned for insufficient funds. Maintenance employees stated they did not always receive payments for working these events once the principal began accepting cash; however, we could not verify this claim. Due to the lack of rental records, we could not verify the number of outside group events held at the school, total rental collections, and related disbursements.
FINDING 4: School employees used the former principal’s private vehicles and equipment for school purposes without written permission from the director of schools.
FINDING 5: Claiborne High School had deficiencies in the operation of the school’s coffee shop. These deficiencies were the result of a lack of management oversight and the inadequate maintenance of accounting records.