The Awendaw Town Council received an audit report in January 2011 with auditor Howard Nichols’ opinions of the town’s finances for fiscal year 2010 (July 1, 2009 – June 30, 2010).
According to a source with significant knowledge of the town’s finances who spoke on conditions of anonymity, Nichols had done audits of four prior years, all at the same time, after the S.C. Municipal Association had gotten the town’s financial records in order. The town, reportedly, had not had audits performed on an annual basis since the 2002-03 time frame.
Mr. Nichols reported nine significant deficiencies with town records. The lack of documentation and the lack of internal controls led Nichols to issue an adverse opinion on the audit.
According to the source, 41 percent of the town’s transactions were not approved with 30 percent of the funds spent not approved, a sum of over $200,000, according to our source.