Posted on 2/2/14

auditor adam1FRANKFORT, Ky. (7/16/13) - Auditor Adam Edelen has received an Excellence in Accountability Award from the National State Auditors Association (NSAA) for his effort to reform special districts in Kentucky.

The awards are presented annually by the organization to recognize government auditing excellence. There are four award categories – large performance audit, small performance audit, special project and forensic report. Auditor Edelen received the special project award.

“Auditor Edelen’s project to analyze Kentucky’s special districts received the highest marks in every category examined by our judges,” said Sherri Rowland, director of NSAA. “The project has already resulted in high-impact for the citizens of the Commonwealth. This project represents a best practice that will be useful to state auditors in all states.”

In March 2012, Auditor Edelen’s office began a massive undertaking to study Kentucky’s special districts – entities such as libraries, fire departments and public health districts. Prior to this effort, it was not known how many special districts existed, where they were located, how much public money flowed through them or whether they were in compliance with state law. Auditors found a $2.7 billion layer of ghost government that lacked transparency and oversight – a situation further hampered by more than 1,000 statutes and regulations by which the special districts are supposed to be governed.

Auditor Edelen’s recommendations for reform were incorporated into House Bill 1 during the 2013 General Assembly and passed into law with broad bipartisan support.

The National State Auditors Association (NSAA) is an organization dedicated to uniting state auditors by encouraging and providing opportunities for the free exchange of information and ideas between auditors on the state, federal and local levels.

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