DeKalb Schools discovers non-workers on payroll
An audit of employees by the DeKalb County School District has found $47,500 in payroll discrepancies, according to a press release from the district.
The employee verification process was ordered by district Superintendent Cheryl Atkinson in February in conjunction with an independent audit of central office and school-based personnel.
Through the process, approximately 15,000 employees at the central office, in all auxiliary departments and at the school level, were directed to verify their employment with the school district.
The school district halted payments to non-verified employees beginning with the April 13 pay period.
The process to date has identified 148 non-verified employees, most of them substitute teachers or part-time coaches.
The process also discovered seven discrepancies in payroll, including two employees who were no longer with the school district and five on leave that were not properly recorded.
These employees were overpaid by approximately $47,500. The district’s legal affairs department is investigating each case and will seek to recover any unearned funds.
“Audits and oversight like the employee verification process should be standard operating procedure for our school district,” Atkinson said. “Moving forward, employee verification will be an annual process to let the public know that our payroll and personnel records are accurate and up to date.”
DeKalb Police offers child abuse awareness training
The DeKalb County Police Department is partnering with the Georgia Center for Child Advocacy to host a child abuse awareness training workshop.
The event is in recognition of National Child Abuse Prevention Month. The aim of the free three-hour course is to educate community members how to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to child sexual abuse.
The training is scheduled for April 25, 5:30–8:30 p.m., at 1950 West Exchange Place, Tucker, in Peer Auditorium on the second floor.
Participants must register prior to the training at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (678) 904-2880, ext. 205.
DeKalb Commissioners to hold public meeting on airport community
Due to public interest in the Board of Commissioners’ review of a proposed comprehensive plan amendment in the area between Clairmont Road and DeKalb Peachtree airport (PDK), two commissioners are holding a public meeting on the matter.
Commissioners Jeff Rader and Kathie Gannon are hosting a public meeting April 23 at 6:30 p.m. at the Chamblee Branch Library at 4115 Clairmont Road.
The commissioners will be there with county staff to discuss the proposed land use change.
The proposal under consideration would redraw the plan for the area for restricted light industrial activities that would be compatible with conditions surrounding PDK airport.
The proposal does not contemplate the expansion of the airfield, private activity directly accessible to the airport or other uses incompatible with surrounding neighborhoods.
After an initial two-month public review process, this matter was recently deferred for an additional two months, and will be re-heard by the community council and planning commission before returning to the Board of Commissioners on May 22. There is no deadline for county action.
DeKalb CEO imposes hiring freeze, budget cuts
A hiring freeze is now in effect for all vacant county positions except police recruits, according to an April 19 memo from DeKalb CEO Burrell Ellis to county department heads.
Ellis stated that the move was necessary because “the county currently faces a number of issues that can have substantial budgetary impact on both the 2012 and 2013 tax fund budgets.”
Those issues include the possible incorporation of Brookhaven, the proposed expansion of Chamblee and annexations by Avondale Estates, Decatur and Doraville, according to Ellis’ memo.
“As a result of the magnitude of the issues and their potential impact on the county tax funds budgets, I believe that it is necessary to implement a number of actions at this time to place the county in a better situation to address the potential financial developments,” Ellis stated.
Ellis also directed the county’s chief financial officer to “create a contingency reserve of 2 percent” by cutting each department’s current budget. The reserve funds will remain in each department’s budget, according to the memo.
Department heads have been directed to develop contingency plans to cut their 2012 budgets another 3 percent and an additional 5 percent for 2013, according to Ellis’ memo.