06/20/13 A letter from the Marshall County Commissioners to Older Adults Services seemed to create some waves between the commissioners and the Sheriff. Chamberlin asked for an explanation during the Commissioner’s meeting Monday.
After asking for and receiving approving of a pre-pay for gas, oil and equipment purchased at Culver Marina for Lake Patrol the Sheriff asked about a June 4th letter discussing the memorandum of understanding between Marshall County and Older Adult Services for Meal on Wheels. The letter indicated that payments were to be sent directly to the County Auditor rather than the Sheriff’s Department.
About a year ago the Sheriff’s Department took-over the cooking of Meals on Wheels when the prior provider’s charge became too much for the agency to afford. The Sheriff offered to provide the meals for a fee of $3.25 each.
Monday Sheriff Chamberlin said, “My cost per meal ranges from $.99 cents to $1.20. In addition I figured $.70 per meal to cover overhead such as labor, the use of the kitchen facilities and electricity.”
He asked what the issue was and Commission President Kevin Overmyer said, “The checks and money receipted are two different amounts.” His example was in May when the Sheriff received a check of about $2,700 he only sent $1,400 to the auditor for the actual food costs. The overage per meal ranges from $1.35 to $1.56 per meal and that money has been going into the Commissary Fund at the jail. It was estimated that the jail prepares 15,000 meals annually for Meals on Wheels.
Overmyer indicated the State Board of Accounts was the reasoning for the change.
Chamberlin stated that the State Board of Accounts had just done an audit at his department and nothing was said about the way the money was being funneled. He explained that with the additional commissary fund money he has been able to provide training for civilian employees including hand to hand combat. He purchased tazers and bean bags for jailers to use providing additional safety for them. The commissary fund has helped fund jail expenses, repairs, security, and paid for additional food because of the increase population.
County Auditor Penny Lukenbill suggested, “We should establish its own separate fund for Meals on Wheels so it’s very clear.” When Older Adult Services pays for the meals the money would be receipted into the Meals on Wheels fund and the money needed to cover the cost of food and overhead could be appropriated back to the jail.
The Sheriff said, “I’m flabbergasted by the letter and would like a better answer than the State Board of Accounts.”
Commissioner Kevin Overmyer asked what the state statue is on designated expenses and income for the commissary fund and Chamberlin stated that he didn’t have that information at hand but could provide it.
Chamberlin and Overmyer will both look at the statue and get together to look at the issues presented.