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Mon, May 20

State, Peach Springs school district, resolve problems

The state Board of Education and Peach Springs School District have resolved their differences over the district¹s alleged bookkeeping problems that led the state to suspend its funding last year.

In a letter dated May 11, state Auditor Generl Debra K.

Davenport notified Lisa Graham Keegan, state superintendent of public instruction, that her office had determined Peach Springs Unified School District No.

8 had corrected reporting deficiencies that prompted the state Board of Education to cut off district funding May 17, 1999.

The district¹s single audit report and Uniform System of Financial Records Compliance Questionnaire for the year ending June 30, 1999 were reviewed in March.

³In our opinion, based solely on our review of those reports and the deficiencies cited by the auditor on the USFR Compliance Questionnaire, the district has complied with the USFR,² the letter stated.

After the state Board of Education decided to cut off funding to Peach Springs last year, the district filed a complaint for Judicial Review of Administrative Decision in Mohave County Superior Court.

As a result, the state had to continue funding to the district until a decision was reached on the complaint.

In her letter to Keegan, Davenport stated she had received a memo from the office of the Arizona Attorney General requesting the review.

The memo further stated that in an effort to avoid protracted litigation the attorney general¹s office and district agreed litigation would be dismissed if Davenport¹s office found the district had corrected its alleged bookkeeping problems.

Areas in question included cash collection reports, expenditures, auxiliary operations, student activities, general fixed assets, average daily membership reporting, payroll, supplies inventory, transportation support, budgets, annual financial report for 1997-98 and federal compliance for entitlements and grants.

³The deficiencies listed previously were corrected,² said Magdalene Haggerty, accounting services director in the auditor general¹s office.

³This does not mean the district is totally deficiency free because there may be newer deficiencies we don¹t know about,² she said.

³But what was cited before has been corrected.²

Herman Parker, superintendent of the Peach Springs School District, did not return a call seeking comment.


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