Columbus – Potential cost savings of $2,014,400 were identified in the performance audit of Butler County released today by Auditor of State Dave Yost.
“Fewer available resources require governments at every level to take a look at how efficiently and effectively they are providing services to taxpayers,” Auditor Yost said. “The results of this performance audit provide Butler County officials with the tools needed to ensure the county’s fiscal health in the future.”
In August 2010, the Butler County Commissioners contacted the Auditor of State’s Office to conduct a performance audit of county operations, especially those operations affecting the county’s general fund. The goal of the performance audit was to identify those areas where savings could be identified and process improvements could be made to assist Butler County in reducing its projected budget shortfalls.
The performance audit recommended that Butler County eliminate the direct recording electronic voting machines and replace them with optical scan machines. While the new machines would have significant upfront costs, the overall cost per vote cast diminishes. The county would recoup the costs through reduced maintenance and upkeep on the machines, reduced training costs and a reduction in the number of poll workers needed, and a decrease in the number of machines needed at each precinct. The cost savings for Butler County would be approximately $905,000 annually.
The performance audit also found that Butler County could be overpaying for its office space by $264,000. While full cost information was not available, estimates show rental/lease costs ranging from $8.80 to $10.09 per square foot and approximately 30,000 square feet in unused or underutilized facility space.
To date, Butler County has not implemented significant energy program initiatives. However, by adopting a county-wide energy conservation program, Butler County could save $61,000 by reducing utility costs by at least 10 percent.
A full copy of this performance audit may be found online at www.auditor.state.oh.us.
The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,600 state and local government agencies. Under the direction of Auditor Dave Yost, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies and promotes transparency in government.