Ponca City, OK

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Auditor says four health department workers sounded first alarms

The Associated Press - December 14, 2017 2:55 pm

Oklahoma Auditor and Inspector Gary Jones.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Oklahoma State Auditor and Inspector Gary Jones says four employees of the Oklahoma State Department of Health sounded the first alarms about the agency’s dire financial problems in early August during a routine audit of the agency.

Jones testified Thursday to a House investigative committee that the agency employees brought their concerns to members of his audit team who were conducting a regular annual review. Jones said it took a few weeks for his staff to verify some of the employees’ concerns but that by Sept. 1 he had “major concerns” about the agency’s finances.

The attorney general’s multicounty grand jury is investigating, and detailed audits of the agency’s finances are under way.

The Legislature also appropriated $30 million during a special session to ensure the agency could make payroll.


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