Audit finds 'poor management, risky investments' in Oley Valley School District

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Published: Nov 20 2013 04:25:35 PM EST   Updated On: Nov 20 2013 05:55:51 PM EST
Oley school
HARRISBURG, Pa. -

The Pennsylvania auditor general is raising a red flag about finances in the Oley Valley School District.

Eugene DePasquale said Wednesday that a recent audit found a risky investment cost Oley taxpayers $6.5 million.

"The auditors found cases of poor management decisions and a lack of oversight, which cost taxpayers money that should have gone toward classroom education," DePasquale said.

The audit also found the district paid more than $30,000 in excessive retirement benefits to a former assistant superintendent.

"Better management and oversight from the school board could have prevented the former administrator from receiving benefits to which she was not entitled," DePasquale said. "It is troubling when I see districts needlessly spending money when budgets are so tight."

Auditors said the district two years ago identified fraud, which included falsified special education reports to bring in more state funds.

"Anytime you hear about allegations of falsifying records and fraudulent payments, you have to be alarmed," DePasquale said.

The audit applies to the 2010 school year. The current superintendent wasn't in charge at that time and didn't want to comment on the auditor general's findings.