By Susan Redden
Workers for the office of Thomas Schweich, Missouri state auditor, have started an audit of Jasper County Circuit Court.
The state review was described as “routine” by Spence Jackson, a spokesman for Schweich’s office.
“We just started,” he said. “It wasn’t prompted by anything in particular. We make it a priority to audit as many courts as possible in a calendar year.”
He said auditors will focus on a single year and will take a look at all the court’s functions, including money paid in and paid out, “and anything else related to the overall operations of the court.”
“And we’ll make recommendations based on what we find,” he said.
David Dally, presiding judge, said he and other court officials had met briefly with the members of the audit staff, who started work in the local courts on Monday.
“We told them we’ll get them whatever they need,” he said. “They’re supposed to be here for several weeks.”
Circuit court operations encompass criminal and civil proceedings. Divisions of the court include associate circuit court, small claims, family court, probate court and juvenile court.
Jasper County’s circuit court contrasts with many others in that the court encompasses a single county, while many circuit courts include as many as five counties. It also contrasts with most other circuit courts in that it has operations in two locations — Carthage and Joplin.
Anyone who wants to provide information on the courts during the audit work may contact the state auditor’s office at 800-347-8597 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“We strongly encourage that; we get a lot of great tips from our hot line and email,” Jackson said.
THE STATE AUDITOR’S OFFICE is charged with auditing all state agencies, boards and commissions, the state court system, and counties that do not have a county auditor. The office also may audit local units of government, based on residents’ petitions.