FRANKFORT, Ky. (July 20, 2023) – Today, the Office of the Auditor of Public Accounts (APA) announced they will conduct a special examination of the Public Protection Cabinet's acceptance, administration, and expenditure of monies associated with, and pertaining to the Team Western Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund, and the Team Eastern Kentucky Flood Relief Fund. The examination will cover both funds from December 11, 2021 through June 30, 2023
The decision follows a letter sent to APA by the co-chairs of the Legislative Oversight and Investigations Committee, Rep. Adam Bowling and Sen. Brandon Storm, which formally requests an audit and/or special examination of the tornado and flood relief funds. In their letter, the committee co-chairs cite KRS 6.935 (1), which states, “…[t]he Auditor of Public Accounts… shall assist the Legislative Oversight and Investigations Committee in whatever manner the co-chairs deem… helpful."
In a written response to the committee co-chairs acknowledging the request and notifying them of APA's decision to conduct a special examination, Assistant State Auditor Petter stated the APA “…will issue a report that describes any weaknesses or deficiencies identified and offer recommendations to strengthen and improve internal controls and procedures. Pursuant to KRS 43.090, the Public Protection Cabinet (PPC), the state agency administering the Funds, will be required to respond in writing to the draft report within fifteen days of receipt and to provide a corrective action plan to the APA and the state legislature within sixty days of the completion of the final examination report."
Assistant Auditor Petter's letter goes on to say that APA will bill the Public Protection Cabinet rather than the relief funds, for its work “…so that the people of the Commonwealth can be assured that no money donated for flood or tornado relief will be used to pay for the special examination."
There is no set date on when APA's examination of the funds will be completed. You can read the full letter here.