A.C. Flora High School’s athletic booster club did not misuse money raised from parents of student athletes and others who contributed to upgrade the schools’ sports programs, the state Attorney General’s office has determined.
“Our investigation did not reveal any evidence that funds received by the booster club were misappropriated or otherwise misused,” Assistant Deputy Attorney General Jared Libet wrote to the club in an Aug. 7 letter released Monday by the club.
“The result was as expected, and we’ll move forward stronger than ever,” the club’s new president, John McCabe said in an interview Monday with The State newspaper. “We came out stronger on the back end (of the investigation).”
But Libet’s letter outlines bookkeeping problems in four areas found by the attorney general’s office, and largely admitted by the club, during a 6-month investigation.
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Many of the problems already had been addressed by booster club leaders because they followed many suggested improvements turned up by accounting firm, McDowell Pearman. The club hired the accountants last year after fathers of two former baseball players questioned bookkeeping practices and asked to see the club’s records.
The fathers, Wes Few and Craig Freemen, wanted transparency but did not allege misappropriation of money.
Libet told club leaders in the letter that they should complete the remaining bookkeeping recommendations made by McDowell Pearman as well as those cited by the attorney general’s office.
“Assuming the booster club implements the recommendations described above, the attorney general’s office does not see a need for additional action at this time, and we will close our investigatory file following receipt and review of the booster club’s update, ” Libet wrote.
McCabe and the club’s attorney, Joe McCulloch, said during the interview that the only recommendation not adopted was McDowell Pearman’s call for a fulltime club bookkeper.
That is too expensive, and the club decided to use two parent volunteers who have business experience to oversee the books, McCabe and McCulloch said.
McCabe would not say whether those volunteers have accounting or bookkeeping backgrounds.