Bedford County Schools improperly awarded a $300,000 computer contract to the highest bidder without adequately documenting its reasons for doing so, state auditors say.
In a letter to the school board, the school system failed to include their reasons for choosing Howard Technology Solutions and rejecting the five lower bidders, auditors reported in an audit of Bedford County finances posted today.
And even though they ended up buying the computers from Howard Technology Solutions, they never executed a formal contract.
Had they gone with the lowest bidder, the school system would have saved more than $27,000, auditors found.
The school system chose Howard because of its service program, according to the school system’s response, included in the audit. That justification was presented to the board, but employees have been directed to follow the auditors’ recommendations going forward, the management response says.
State auditors also faulted the school system for mixing federal stimulus funds in with other funds, and said that at the county sheriff’s office, the commissary needs more checks and balances; at the time of the audit, only one employee was responsible for entering the money into the accounting system, making deposits, reconciling bank statements and disbursing funds.