Oakland aldermen allege shoddy bookkeeping inside City Hall - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Oakland aldermen allege shoddy bookkeeping inside City Hall

By Justin Hanson - bio | email

OAKLAND, TN (WMC-TV) - City aldermen in Oakland are asking the state for help in getting the town's finances straight. 

Mayor Scott Ferguson says it's all part of a political agenda, and now both parties are speaking out.

"We have a year's worth of figures that we don't know if they're accounted for or not," said city council member Maggie Powers.

Maggie Powers and John Evans signed a ten-point complaint against the town to the Tennessee State Comptroller. In it, the two allege everything from illegal hiring practices to personal use of public property and shoddy bookkeeping.

"Our job as aldermen is to make sure we are wisely using the public's money," Evans said.

In question is an $11,000 deposit made July 2010 for the town's fire service. Records show the deposit was withdrawn the same day and then put back into the town account three months later.

"I don't know what happened over that three month period of time it was credited back to the books three months after the fact," Powers said.

Ferguson says it was a simple clerical error.

"We've offered every opportunity for the aldermen to come in and meet with Richard Almond or myself to go over the books," he said. "They've not taken the opportunity."

Powers and Evans also have pictures of Ferguson in the town's vehicle at his second job as a preacher in Obion, Tennessee.

"He seems to think its OK, but our city policy states that is for official use only," Powers said.

"I'm on call 24/7," Ferguson said. "It's been understood by the entire board when I came on and with the previous administration."

Ferguson says he wants complete transparency in Oakland's government, and he welcomes an audit by state officials.

Ferguson plans to present a $150,000 budget surplus at Thursday night's city board meeting.

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