Nevada County board of education to talk grand jury report |

Nevada County board of education to talk grand jury report

The Nevada County Board of Education will meet at 3 p.m. Wednesday to discuss back to school updates and vote on whether to approve a letter to the Nevada County Superior Court, drafted by the board, in response to a June grand jury report that critiques the board’s transparency toward credit card expenses.

The proposed letter responds to six claims made by a grand jury report released on June 26 that found the Nevada County Office of Education lacked financial oversight on spending, and did not have clear policies to regulate employee spending on office-issued credit cards.

The grand jury’s investigation was initially triggered by a July 2014 citizen complaint that alleged a lack of transparency and oversight on the credit card purchases and receipts of Nevada County Superintendent of School employees; purchases were cited as “excessive because of lack of supporting documentation for authorization.”

The report also claims the county Board of Education “did not perform due diligence” when it voted 3-2 at its July 9, 2014 board meeting against overseeing Superintendent of Schools Holly Hermansen’s expense reports and office-issued credit card receipts.

In the Board of Education’s proposed letter, in response to the grand jury, the board disagrees with five out of six claims reported by the grand jury, stating that the their office “has an existing written policy that adequately defines allowable expenses” and “excessive spending.”

“The board is satisfied with its level of oversight over the Superintendent’s credit charges and reimbursements,” the letter states. “… The board has no concerns about inappropriate and excessive spending using a commercial credit card.”

The board’s proposed letter, though, does agree with the grand jury’s suggestion that the public would benefit from having electronic access to the Nevada County Office of Education Policy.

In other business, the board will receive a presentation from Countywide Health Coordinator Sharyn Turner, on a student health and wellness program.

In her superintendent’s report, Hermansen will review the county’s back to school staff meeting, a statewide superintendent of schools board meeting, and scholar day at the fair. Hermansen will also give the board an update on the office’s proposed consolidation of facilities.

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