Commissioners Respond After Audit Finds Issues in Rogers County

There was no mention of a newly released 2011 audit during the Rogers County Commission meeting this morning.

The report points out the problems of district two and its commissioner Mike Helm. Items of interest include overcharges, fictitious invoices, questionable and wasteful costs related to FEMA funds and bid restricting.

"His FEMA funds issued by the federal government were looked at by FEMA and Oklahoma Emergency Management. There are more than one set of eyes looking at these things," Commissioner Kirt Thacker said.

And now all eyes are on Commissioner Helm and here's why. The auditor questioned costs related to FEMA:

$5 million was not properly documented,

invoices were submitted for reimbursement twice,

and there were incorrect charges.

Commissioner Helm did not respond to the audit but his fellow commissioners did.

"We need to get to the point where Rogers County has a zero audit finding and we will get there eventually, " says Commissioner Chairman Dan DeLozier.

In another finding in the audit there was No Verification of Road Construction/Materials documented for costs up to $2.5 million.

A number of changes were recommended by the state auditors office, but they're just that recommendations and not binding.

And to the question of whether Commissioner Helm should resign?

"He has not been charged with any crimes or anything or been indicted or anything like that," says Commissioner Thacker.

Commissioner DeLozier plans to call a meeting this week with the other elected officials to go over the audit.